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S C RAN TON
LETT>T; of TRAJTSIuITTAL
January 30, 1914
To The Representatives of the
Charitable Agencies of Scranton:
This Survey was made at the solicitation
of a number of those interested in the charitable
agencies of the cit;v. It was financed by the
Directors of the Scranton Poor District, who, however,
desired to assume no more important position than that
of the other agencies.
It was informally agreed, therefore, that
the City Improvement Department of the Century Club
should call together the representatives of the different
charitable societies to whom this report might oe pre-
sented. It will not be possible to go over more than
certain parts of it, and I shall recoi:iiiiend that it be
referred to a special committee for more full consideration
tk. General Secretary, American Association
of Societies for Organizing Charity
o 3 l«l.8
rABLE OF CONTENTS
Scope of Investigation, Page 1.
Chief Heed in Scranton, Page 3-
Paiuily Care in Scranton, page 19 .
necessary Developiiient of Fainily Care, Page 6l.
Child-Caring, Page 7^.
_ The Sick, Page 84.
»■<. Part VII. Care of Non-Residents and the Homeless, Page 83.
'^* Part VIII. The Attitude of tne Coiiimunity towards
^^ Private Giving, Page 89.
S Part IX. Institutions, Page 97.
Part X. Procedure, Page 99
PART I .
SCOPE OF TH E IirVE STIGATIOIT
The purposes of this investigation are
of a strictly practical character. They have to
do with an inunediate program. For that reason,
the results as here presented do not indicate any
academic completeness so far as detail may be in-
volved. In other words, the report does not pre-
sent a completed picture of all of the activities
of all of the agencies in the city.
On the other ha.nd, it presents an examina-
tion of the r.iost important questions involved in the
development of this side of the social wor^c in
(1) The chief need in Scranton.
(2) Outdoor poor relief of the Scranton
(3) Other outdoor relief.
(4) The care of families in their homes.
(a) What is done.
(b) What is left undone.
(c) Wiiat is required in the way of
reorganization, co-ordination, and
division of work, in order to con-
structively worl-: v/itn faxiilies, with
greater co-operation, aiidty, under-
standing and efficiency.
(5) The situation regarding child- caring.
(6) Care of the sick.
(7) Care of the homeless.
(8) Special institutional problems with reference
to families in their honies.
(9) Certain data regarding expenditures, public
and private .
(10) Recoiiiraendations for the carrying out of the
plans herein indicated.
(11) Special report on institutional activities
of the Scranton Poor District, to be
later presented to the Board.
P A R T II.
CHIE? ITEED IIT SGRAi'TTOIT
The chief need in Scranton is an ap-
preciation of what is lacking in the rehabilitation
of families v/hicn have come to disaster. Because the
situation has been so little sensed it is necessary to
deal with it most emphatically and previously to a
consideration of any other factors.
In doing this we are not wrenching the form
in which the Survey is presented, because the Survey
itself has so plainly revealed tne fact that not v/ith
neglected families themselves, nor v/ith societies and
agencies lies the greatest fault, but vfith the
community in general.
It has been easy to perceive what a great
many people have considered are the chief lacks.
Indeed so commonly recognized are the evils resulting
from the lack of a registration bureaii or confidential
exchange for the use of agencies working in the homes
with families, that it has not been necessary to prove
our case in this direction. From every quarter there
ha.s come the acknowledgment that relief hn.s been given
without sufficient investigation, that there has
"been duplication of relief, tnat there has been
over-lapping of relief. It has been generally
agreed that relief has been wasted in many cases.
So it has beei that some have thought that the main
purpose of a Survey like this would have to do with
the practicability of a registration bureau or
Now while the matters mentioned in the
previous paragraph do deserve attention and will be
spoken of later, they do not include the chief need
and one which overvirhelmingly exceeds the others in
importance. It involves a new way of v/orking and a
new set of purposes and ends. To begin with, questions
of relief play but a minor part in this new way of
v/orking. It ha.s to do with constructive working with
families in wnich relief may or may not play its part.
It means tne laying dowri of a definite plan in which
a number of societies and individuals may each play
their pa.rt, witii economy of effort for the actual
and permanent improvement of the conditions of living
of a faivdly so far as they can be improved. Though
the word has a touch of coldness in it, yet it best
describes the difference between your ol t and the pro-
posed new method; I mean the v/ord organization."
To borrow an analogy froi.i the business
world, we may liken the organizer of family rehabil-
itation to the organizer of a new business enterT:)rise.
The success of such a i enterprise depends upon
whether the business organizer "brings together under
the right circwn stances, and witn proper co-ordination,
the exact amounts and kinis of capital and labor,
considering the latter to include all forms of labor
froiu managerial to unskilled, required for economic
and efficient production. In the saine way the
organizer in the family rehabilitation field must bring-
together under the right circumstances and with proper
co-ordination, the exact amounts and kinds of service
required in order to reduce to a minimum the handicaps
under which a family is laboring. Relief is only
one kind of service.
Such planning is based upon a kind of
investigation which is absolutely absent in this city.
It is the kind of investigation whic-i is not intended to
separate people into two classes, "worthy" and "unworthy,"
but is intended to discover underlying difficulties in
order to intelligently deal with them. It regards a
fai.'iily just as a physician regards an individual patient.
There is no qxiestion of "worth" or "unworth" whenever a
physician assuines responsibility. There can be none
in this other field either. Such investigations go
far beyond interviewing the members of a family group,
and often involve many sources of information, including
relatives, church connections, school teachers, old
employers, landlords and agents, doctors and lawyers, etc.
It ia not necessary for me to state that such sources of
information are now used in this city, but I do most
positively affirm that they are used in a more or less
desultory way, and not in a manner vrhich brings the
best constructive results.
In the next stage there is even less evidence
of a proper working out. This involves the joint
planning of different societies and individuals in
carrying out a coi^jxaonly agreed upon plan. How, of
course, there is co-operation betv/een societies. But
it largely takes the aspect of one society asking another
to do a very definite and specific thing, Where this
co-operation is most active, however, i s in the field
outside tne homes of neglected families. I refer to the
co-operation betv/een societies dealing with families in
their homes, and the institutions which receive the thrown-
out atoms of more or less broken up family groups. Outside
of this field no real co-operation exists. There is no
joint planning which is worthy of the naxxie. We shall in
a later part of the report touch upon some evidences of the
lack of even formal co-operation. But it cannot be too
definitely affirmed that while there is a limited working
together in a limited number of instances, there is
nothint^ resembling the kind of co-ordinating effort which
we have tried to describe. This by no means reflects upon
the specialized efforts of a great many organizations.
But the results of these specialized efforts are just as
much minimized as would oe the case if one were to engage
an able corps of experienced people to manage separately
a nxffiioer of different departments in a business without
any sort of co-ordination between the different departments.
What we ha.ve already said iiaplies what might
be definitely stated in so many words. In the difficulties
of a single family there may be required the services of
half a dozen or a dozen different societies and persons.
If in a city there is no one actually bringing together
the different kin-is of service required, as indicated by
careful independent investigations, and seeing that each
agrees as to the part which he or his organization will
take, there is, of course, not the slightest guaranty
that families v/ill receive the proper kinds of attention
and will be given anything like a fair show to recover
themselves. So:!ie will, because of their own inherent
strength. Others will by reason of a series of lucky
accidents, - the rignt things, and all the right things
being done. But s. more costly, inefficient and unjust
situation cannot be imagined. Because such a syster;i or
lack of system exists in this city of Scranton, is one
reason, and one very irnportant reason, why the amount
of public outdoor relief has increased so considerably
in the last few years. We shall give later the
percentages on this. There are other factors to be
taken into account here, "but preeminent importance must be
giveri to the fact that this growing industrial city is
still laboring under a scheme of things which would with
difficulty serve in a homogeneous city of 20,000.
Let me give just one illustration from another
city showing the efforts of the co-ordinating agency in
that city in connection with one fnmily:
"How a. crippled man became a shoemaker illustrates
an agent's services and the organization of helpfulness.
On the first day of December, I909, as this man
walked alon^. the street upon his crutch, a gentleman,
noting his crippled condition, stopped long enough to tell
him to go to the Associated Charities. "The gentleman said
they might help him" was as definite as he could make his
A kindly interview brought out the facts that
he was thirty years old, and had a wife and three small
children. Until a year previous he had worked on a
farm, vi'nen he lost his leg by an accidental gun shot
wound. Coming into town, for he could no longer support
his family in the country, the^ were all living in one
small room, rented from the wife's sister, herself a poor
dressmaker. The wife worked in a factory and was earning
$4,50 a vreek. The husband took care of the children.
"Wny couldn't your wife stay at home with the
children, do sewing, and let you find sonie light work?"
"She can't see to sew, and it makes her eyes
hurt," was hi a reply.
Let us set do^m the rest of the storj^ step by
step, just as an agent of the Associated Charities brought
An oculist exaiained the wife's eyes.
An optician gave her txie glasses.
An institution supplied temporary employment
to the man at which he proved his willingness to v.-ork.
Relatives cared for the children while botii
A shoemaker agreed to take the man in his shop
and teach him the trade.
A Sunday-School class provided money equivalent
to the wife's earnings so tnat she might care for the
children while the man served his apprenticeship in the
A public hospital treated both husband and
wife during temporary sickness.
The same Sunday-School class guaranteed the
cost of a shoe-maker's outfit for the man and paid
rent while he was building up a business.
Numbers of individuals were found to give
The result has been that this man paid for
hin outfit and is now making three tines as much as
his wife formerly earned. The oldest child is in
school, and has done so well that he has been
advanced in his grade. In short, a hovel has been
made into a prosperous home."
Local Tests .
On so iiaportant a point we have not been
willing to rest our case entii-ely upon a general
statement, no matter how well founded, without definite,
individual testing. The slightest investigation of the
field is sufficient to reveal the absence of this co-
operative planning and doing and even of the mechanism
to bring it about. Conversations had with the
individual workers were sufficient confirmation.
Nevertheless, it seemed eminently desirable
to try out the conditions in a limited number of fajnilies.
So hurried special investigations were made which sufficient-
ly revealed what had been done and what had been left un-
done under present conditions. We cannot see that the
selections made were in any way exceptional. We are
obliged to believe that the situations revealed are in
no way exceptional and are indicative of the dreadful
costs to both family and community of the present un-
organized conditions. In presenting the results of
some of these special inquiries, we cannot, of course,
tell the stories in any complete way because of the
danger of identification. As the inquiries came to
a head it became quite evident that whatever efforts
we could make in our limited time to obtain specific
services would not be sufficient to meet the many
needs revealed. We have felt that the inquiries would
not have been entirely justified unless the efforts were
continued to deal with the problems involved. Realizing
that the questions of reorganization which will be
considered later would take some time, we have endeavored
to suggest a bridging over of this gap oy the creation
of a temporary committee, later mentioned, which shall
as far as possible carry out the plans indicated.
Inquiry of the various charitable societies
in the city showed that this family was unknown to
all save the Poor Board, wno were giving them $6.
a month. The Board's records contained only the
inforraation that this was an English widow with seven
children, two of working age.
A first visit to this fairly comfortable
home revealed at once that here was a case which would
need prolonged personal service. The ruother, a
refined, intelligent woman, but one v/ho lacked all force ■
and initiative, seemed to have been unable to readjust
herself since her husband's death. He had been sick
a long time, so their savings had been exhausted some
time prior to his deatn. A church was supplying coal,
the mother taking in washing, the tv;o girls working, but
the combined earnings of the three fell far short of
supplying the necessary food to feed eight mouths, not
to mention rent and clothes. They were making an unequal
figh^, with the result that now the mother feared a break-
down for tne oldest girl, and sne herself wasi't very
well. i'o, she had no relatives who could help, nor
would she be willing that they be asked, as they had not
shown the proper sympathy or interest during the man's
illneso, nor since his death- so v;hile the mother
continues in this frar'ie of mind it seems un'>"ise to bring
the relatives in.
A medical examination was planned for the
oldest child, and the .mother's lack of control was at
once evidenced when she felt she coijld not insist when
the girl refused to go. Proju various sources of in-
fonnation caine stater.ients of the mother's false pride,
of making pretensions whicn she could not possibly
carry out and then coming in great distress to others
to meet these obligations, of her ina.bility to cope
with the responsibility of planning for her family,
and of her general melancholy and depressed state of
mind. All voted her a good but weak character.
The church was giving moi-e than the woman
had indicated, but evea with tnis added amount it was
not enough to meet their needs. That here was a case
which would need personal service, not added relief,
was at once decided. Better paying, and positions
which had promise for the future must be found for the
girls. The mother must have a friend and adviser,
one v/itn soiind practical judgment, viho would act as
a guide, sympathetic but firm. Perhaps, too, her
occupation should be changed to a -uore interesting one.
She had been a milliner in her youth, why not arrange
for soi.ie training and make it possible for her to work
in her home at this trade? In time a combined household
might be arranged for, as tnere is a grandmother with
grown sons and daughters, who at present feel they do
not want to be bothered witn these children.
An American widow viiin five children under nine
appeared before the Poor Board some three years ago.
The only infomiation on file there indicates that they
granted her relief for a few months to tide her over
until she could probably realize something on her
property in which her interest amounted to $1500.
This investigation made three years later,
showed that the woman had not been living at the address
given for the past two years, was still receiving the
Poor Board allowance, as well as being helped soi.ewhat
by a church society. She hp.d sold her property, clearing
about |>900., of v,fhich she invested $700, at 5 per cent,
and was marking a hard fight to live on this $35* yearly
plus the #6. allowance monthly and what she could earn.
And her occupation v,-as working on materials which v/ent
towards the making of infants* dresses, in spite of the
fact that botn she and two of the children had been
declared tubercular and one child had actually been in
a sanitarium. This sajae child also has a severe
organic disease, aj-id is low assisting in this home work.
The doctors vrere consulted; there seems to be
a disagreement as to whether the i.;other and children
really have tuberculosis, a.lthough they are all inclined
to the belief that in the case of one child it has been
arrested, probably. This r.other is trying hard to
conceal the fact that she may have tuberculosis. Also
of her investment and small incone, so until her entire
confidence is gained, and she ca i oe approached on the
subject of this money, it will he necessary to ignore it
in a plan. Of course, what shape this plan should take
hinges entirely on whether or not the mother and children
are suffering froi.i this infectious disease. If they
are, sanitarium care for the sick memhers, and other
provision for the healthy children must be made. If the
mother is not tuberculous, all effort will be made to
provide a friend whose advice she v/ill accept in time
on the proper way to use her small capital tc best
advantage until the children are of working age, and
who in the meantime will see that the family is ade-
quately cared for. Perhaps, too, the occupation of
the mother will hnve to be changed at any rate, as
it does net seeii to agree with her. Continuous
treatment for tne child witn the organic disorder will
have to be provided.
In the interim awaiting the doctors' decision,
they having already been put in touch with each other,
a temporary plan will be put into effect including a
complete rest for the mother, of which she seems much
in need, and sufficient good food for the entire
family, the co-operation of the churcn society having
already been promised in carrying it out.
Various consul taticna v;ere held in this
instance, which took us to the church interested, to the
offices of two doctors and to a hospital, to a real estate
office, and to the home of the family, as •'■'^ell as previous
neighbors and the various general charitable societies in
A foreign widow whose husband had just committed
suicide, leaving her with three small children and a nev
"baby expected soon - this was the information on file at
the Poor Board office, and also that they were giving her
$6 monthly since the man's death.
A meeting with the woman at the office brought
out that she went to work alinost daily, locking in her
four children, all unaer 6, and that one had fallen
out of the window during her absence. No, she had no
relatives, she said, no boarders, only friends who were
no better off than herself.
A call at the sparsely furnished, filthy hoi.ie,
found the four healthy, happy, out ohi so dirty babies
alone. The inother returned at noon. A room containing
much men's wearing apparel revealed a brother who was
living there, but wno she now claimed contributed nothing,
and whoiii she feared. Calls on interested people brought
forth the further information that there are three brothers,
all working in this city, the single one living with the
woman and apparently having made spasiaodic attempts at
helping his sister in spite of her denial, another who h?.s
a family and could possibly not assist with money, but
whose wife could care for soue of tne children during
necessary absences of the r.:other froia the home, and still
another wo seems quite prosperous, ovns two houses nearby
and earns a fair salary, in addition to keeping boarders.
That the oldest boy must not be kept from school
to care for the younger childre was at once iuipressed
on this fariiily. The single brother was sent for, and
an attempt made to interest him in a plan whereby he
should contribute a stated aciount in return for board,
and make it possible for his sister to remain in the
home, caring for her children, taking in a small amount
of work, and being taught the principles of cleanliness
and homekeeping. The other brothers will have to be
brought in on the financial side also as the pla,n
develops. A nearby neighbor has been interested, who
no doubt caa be utilized in supervising the homekeeping
of the woman, while a man will take up the question of
handling the three brothers and holdin;j; them up to their
This is another case, where perhaps not added
relief, but an unlimited amount of guidance and advice will
be required, covering a period no doubt until the children
have been started on their working careers at least.
To get this picture of the family we had:
(1) An interview with the i/iother in the office.
(2) Called on the various charitable agencies in the city,
to ascertain if they knew and were helping this fsimil;
(3) A visit to the fajaily's ho-ne.
(4) A call on the landlady.
(5) Two calls on a nearby neighbor who is interested in
church work and work with children.
(6) A visit to the hospital.
(7) A call on the brothers' employers.
(8) An interview v/ith the brother at the office.
(9) Another interview wit>i the mother at the office,
(10) And another attempt has been made to hold a conference
with the brothers,
In this instance the Poor Board record contained
the information that the man is sick, there are five children
under working age, and relief has been given the fsunily one
month, $6.00, this being a new case.
Visits to various charitable societies and the
dispensary proved they were unknowii to them. A visit to
the home found the man suffering apparently with tuberculosis,
a private doctor treating, and the family using up their
savings in an attempt to save his life. They could speak
no English, and a neighbor was called on to interpret.
This neighbor's husband also has tuberculosis, so an attempt
is being made to interest their priest in persuading the
men to go to the tuberculosis dispensary for treatment, and
a further plan will oe worked out as the necessary
family history is obtained.
The Poor Board record showed that this was the
family of a deserter. The man h?/i disappeared two months
previous to application and there were five children, one
of working age. Relief was granted in July, then the
next order was called for in September, and they were issued
monthly to December inclusive.
Our hurried investigation revealed that man had
returned in Septeiuber, and the entire faniily excepting
oldest child had left the city for the country, but we
could not ascertain where. This child is now living in
the city with a relative, and we have been unable to find out
who has been drawing the monthly pension.
To get this information we calledon the various
general charitable agencies in the city, as well as:
(1) At address given for family.
(2) A neighbor.
(3) The relative with who^a the girl lives.
The Poor Board records in this case simply
indicated that this Canadian family with seven children,
two of working age, were receiving '^'J . monthly, as the
father was sic>: with tuberculosis and going to West
The hurried investigation revealed that the
man had been in the sanitariuia a nximber of times, coming
home at will, that the dispensary had long been interested,
that they suspected the wife of having been infected but
never succeeded in getting her to covie for an examination,
that a church society had helped recently with clothes
and food, that there were relatives who occasionally
helped a little but not adequately nor systematically,
though they did not prove adverse to a plan for systematic
aid but were not open to the question at the moment as
the woman had just ihlierited a few hundred dollars, they
claimed. They believed this prosperity had again lured
the man home as we found he had returned the week before
in a worse condition than ever. He had always been
selfish and they intimated that there had been drinking
prior to and since his illness. Further we found that
the two ol'lest are working in mills.
Moral suasion will have to be used with the man
to see that he returns to the sanitarian at oncej the
wife has consented to a physical exajaination;
if the story of the inheritance proves true, she will
have to be gui ied in its expenditure, and "'hen exhausted
proper plana made and carried out for further maintenance
until the burden of support may safely oe left to the
children- the man's being a hopeless case. The health
of this family will have to be carefully guarded, and the
relatives rallied at the proper time to help in carrying
out the plan. Of course this will have to be greatly
changed should the report of the doctor on the ...other's
physical condition make it necessary.
To get this information -"e visited:
(1) At hone of the family.
(2) At the various general societies in the city.
(3) Twice at dispensary.
(4J At the church.
(5) Conferred with St. Vincent de Paul representative.
(6) Called at the home of two relatives.
(7) Notified a brother of man to call.
(8) Consulted the school records as to ages of children,
as well as birth registration.
This is the f<ainily of an American widow with
seven chil-iren, three over working a^e. She had been on
the Poor Board record for a short time, but is no longer
It is a story of a widow with a wayward daughter,
who is now trying to live honestly according to the mother's
statement, a grown son who hns gone off to another city
and does not help in the support, another who is at home
and contributing his share toward the family budget, and a
brother who was hurt in the mines and claims to be unable to
work since the accident, though a consultation with the
physician at the hospital where he had been treated showed
he could work if he wanted to. This mother has an ailment
which requires an operation which it is expected would
result in complete recovery. Arrangement has been made
for her to go to the hospital, effort has been made to reach
the brother and see that he is started at work which he can
do, but as was expected he did not come to keep the appointment,
Care for the children would have to be provided during the
mother's absence, should we succeed in getting her consent
tc the operation.
In this instance we have had:
(1) Two conferences witn the woman
(2) Consultation with a society
(3) Consultation with the hospital physician
(4) And made an attempt to see the brother.
The Poor Board record in this instance merely
showed that there were eight children in this widow's family,
one of whom would now be of working age, that one director
was and is giving aid to the a:jiount of $6. monthly, that
another had made out an order during the year but had then
recalled it with tne statement that "Tnis woman lives with
man C. C, wife, hold this order up," and also that during
the latter part of the year she had been ordered to appear
before the board on complaint of neighbors.
Almost every agency in this city is interested
in this faimily though there has been no working together.
Indicative of this is the fact that while one agency is
expending much i.ioney and ti:;ie on them, they do not
apparently kno^Y of the woman's history of having lived
with other laen even during her husband's lifetime and
during his stays at sanitariurus, as well as at the present
time. He was a tuberculosis patient who apparently has
infected his wife, and soine of the children, during his
periodic returns hoiie, where the greatest filth and squalor
prevailed. The proper precautions to check the spread of
the disease were also lacking. The oldest girl who is
suspected of having tuberculosis, thougn no exeuaination has
been made, has been working in a mill for quite a long
time, though we find from the school records that she was
born in April, l899 • The next oldest is home fro:.i school
with a leave of absence, indefinite apparently, sc that
she may nurse the mother and care for the family. So
these children have been and are being sacrif±)ed.
In this case we:
(1) Obtained the iniornation fro::, three charitable
agencies which have aided;
(2) Prom two medical agencies which have been interested.
(3) Fro-. a consultation of tne school records.
It is particularly necessary to break up this
family at the present moment, as the mother is now
considering marrying again. She and the infected children
should, of course, be sent to a sanitarium and provision
made for the rest of the children.
This is another fajnily on the Poor Board records
as widow with six children who is receiving ^6. monthly.
She has also been Kao^'/n to other agencies, who
state that the oldest girl is working and the second oldest
has a leave of absence froi.i school. The oldest girl had
a similar leave of absence prior to going to work.
Consultation of the records shows that this
oldest girl is working illegally, not being 14 until next
liarch, and the second oldest is apparently 12 years old.
We here consulted with:
A charitable agency
The school records
The birth registration.
This investigation was only begun but is here
used on account of the child-labor problecis already
7/iiat Should be th e Qrganizin,^ Cen ter?
^Tiat should be the Organizing Center?
This brin^ us straight to the question of the
proper functions of an Associated Charities. We wish to
consider this question now entirely apart fro/a a considera-
tion of the kinds of service now perforraed by the Associated
Charities in this city. About its work we shall have a good
deal to say later. We shall then have occasion to indicate
how far it fulfils the responsibilities assuined by similar
organizations in other cities. We shall then frankly
comment upon the injustice of some of tne criticism leveled
at it, and the justice of other criticism. But in order
to properly estimate local needs, let us observe how those
needs are met in other cities witn societies which hove
been recently organized.
(1) An entirely properly organized Associated Charities
should have a conf i'lential exchange or registration b;ireau
in which should be registered on cards just the names and
addresses of faiailies known to the different organizations
in the city, so tnat when more than one organization is
interested they may each be notified. But it is indicative
of the fact that this function is not the most important,
that the greater number of societies today have not developed
far along this line. Jiore attention is being given to this
side of the work and oo society now organized or reorganized
should pass it by.
(2) An Associated Charities makes investigations
of fanilies referred to it along the lines previously
(3) I^^ doin^^- 30, it may irar.iediately develop a plan
for co-operative treatment, bringing in the proper co-
operation of societies or individuals by personal inter-
view or the use of the telephone or correspondence.
(4) But in a certain nuraber of the families wherein
the problems are unusually difficult or where a difference
of opinion exists, oetween say the Associated Ch<;rities'
representative and the representative of a special agency,
there is reference to a decisions coinraittee upon which are
represented the different agencies and the chtirches which
h?,ve a systematic ITamily vrp rl-c. Upon it also may serve
experienced volunteers who are later described. This
conunittee discusses the individual problems until a coinmon^^
agreement has been arrived at and there is a proper
assu'iiption of responsibility by those who are to help in
carrying out the plan. All matters which do not fall to
the lot of other agencies, or to volunteer workers, must
be carried out by the paid workers of the Associated
Charities. It is needless to say that there is a vast
mass of tasks which fall into this category.
(5) In addition to iDringing into co-operation
the representatives of other charitable agencies, it has
always been the purpose of societies of this sort to
increase rather than to decrease the aiiaount of personal
and volunteer service on the part of individuals not
charged with inimediate responsibility. The ups and
downs of this side of the work are considerable. I
believe that in tiiues past efforts have ^oeen made in
this direction in Scranton, though at present there are
comparatively few, if any, volunteers actually at work.
It is essential, however, to proper success, to have
the limited services of those engaged in other pursuits.
Any syster;! which discourages this is a bad thing, no
matter what degree of efficiency may be introduced in
other directions. Othei*wise, any schetiie of family re-
habilitation becomes of necessity somewhat official
which is bad for the families and bad for the society.
Furthermore, it seriously limits the work in two direc-
tions. It limits the carrying out of plans to what may
be accomplished oy any always limited paid staff of workers,
In the second place it prevents the knowledge of actual
living conditions extendiiig far beyond the knowledge of
tnose who are giving their whole tiiue to the work. For
instance, we have run across traces of a peculiar and
special housing problem, of which there appears to be
no general knowledge, in the couwiunity as a whole. We will
apeak of this later 'but it is indicative of what we have
generally felt during the whole Survey. That was that the
knowled.-e of home conditions was largely, thoiogh not entirely,
confined to the paid workers of the city in a manner not true
of the extension of knowledge aa to other social conditions.
The most energetic societies today are developing new
methods of obtaining, holding and training volunteers.
By tnat, I do not mean a great mo'o of people turned loose
to do anything they will, out a group of anywhere frou ten
to fifty persons in a city of this size, who are gaining
in experience and who are carrying out definite parts of
plans worked out "by the general secretary or the decisions
coiTimittee before referred to.
(6) \Wienever investigations of the real sort are made,
an Associated Charities is constantly gathering information
of the greatest value in connection with the necessary
improvement of conditions. The kind of information thus
gathered varies with the problems which exist in different
cities. How in Scranton the uiost unique problem in
connection with destitute families is as to how far
these conditions may be traced back to industrial
accidents. Yet it has been found impossible to obtain
froiii the records of any organization in the city any
reliable in format ion on this point. It should have
been possible for ua to have been able to present the
niimber of instances in which an industrial accident has
led on to the necessity of a family applying for social
service of various kinds. In the most modern system of
records there are simple devices, used in connection with
an alphabetical or street registration of families,
wnich enable the registrar of the society to readily
produce the record in which a given condition exists.
The exact scheme of classification cannot, as before
said, be laid do^m for any particular coiiuTiunity, but
must grow as a result of tne observation of particular
needs or evils which coifie to light in the extended
record of faj:iilies which are the only ones worth the
time and money invested in them.
(7) An Associated Charities has the most intimate
knowledge of hoiiie conditions because it is a center
througn which tne knowledge of all agencies working
witii families in their homes, flows. In addition,
its records properly kept, furnish the accurate
data for illustrations upon which iaipressions of
general knowledge may be anchored in connection with
many inportant steps forward. Sometimes it must
lead in sucn movements and sometimes it must simply
furnish information. Thus in the matter of indus-
trial accidents, it would need only to furnish
information to other societies leading in the fight
for workingmen' s compensation. V.Tiere local action
is necessary, it must often assume the leading role.
It is a question whether it will not be obliged to
later on initiate a movement looking towards housing
regulations. One of the most obvious of apparent
evils is the use of basement floors of what are
really one-faiaily houses by a second faiaily. It will
require the careful gathering of data for an extended
period on the part of all of the agencies visiting
families in their homes in order to deteniiine just
the conditions surrounding basement habitations and
what necessary restrictions should be put upon such
uses. The preparing of a blank for use in the
making of such observations should follow a conference
in which those laost experienced should discuss what
are the most obvious points to' be covered. We are
using this only by way of illustration and shall
mention it later in connection vrith other questions
in v/hich the leadership of the Associated Charities
(8) We have not discussed the internal organization
of such a society because we are not '...ealiiig with that
side. But in order to correct a conimon error, it
should be stated that the work facing an Associated
Charities is so important that its "board of directors
must be selected on account of individual strength and
interest. Tne associated effort coiues through the use
of a confidential exchange, the conferences "between the
general secretary and assistants, and the representatives
of other organizations, the organization and deliberation
of one or iiiore decisions coiimiittees and comhined effort
through the Associated Charities' office in undertaking
PART III .
FAIilLY CARE 11: SCRAITTOIT
Let us no"v consider the factors in Fainily
care as they reveal themselves at the present time.
¥e reserve for a later part a consideration of the
care of the sick.
Expenditures for Relief
We herewith present a taole showing outdoor
relief expenditures for the general agencies of the city.
Scranton Poor District 1913 134,414.23
Associated Charities and
Humane Society 19 11 2,037.35#
Salvation Army Sstii:iated '^,000.00
Societies Partial 2,400.00
St. Vincent de Paul
Society Approximate 3.296.21
#!Iiiis includes certain office expenditures, such as
fuel, light, telephone, stationery, but neither rent
So far as churches are concerned, we have partial
returns froni Protestant Churches indicating expenditures
of about §3000. The relief work of the Catholic Churches
is largely embraced in the returns of the St. Vincent de
Nvimbers of J'amilies Known to Different
We here give not the number of individual
families known to all organizations after duplications have
been eliminated, but the aggregates of numoer of families
known to the individual agencies. Partial comparisons
have been made betweea a few organizations but no extensive
comparison could be made because of the fact that in most
instances the records were either kept in poor shape or
there were no records at all.
Scranton Poor Board 1913 64-8 families
(This is p-irtially estim-'ted, there being no complete
Associated Charities Oct. 1, I912
Sept. 30, 1913 1433 .Vajailies
(This excludes 273 cases of transients and out-of-
Salvation Army Sstimated 50 Families
Societies Estimated At least pO "families
St. Vincent de Paul
Society Partial 137 Fai'ailies
Societies Giving Other
Service in Homes
Visiting Nurses' Asso. 1913 1295 Patients
(Of tnis number, at least 1^4 were pay patients,
the inco.;.e being furnished by an ins\irance company)
Scranton Day Nursery 1913 73 Children
Partial List of Churches
(Lioat of these fi^iures are
estiras.ted on ordinary nmn"ber
of fajfiiilies Knovra to cnurch
Church lltimber 1
Church Numcer 2
Hiss ion of Saiae
Church ITumber 3
Church ITumher 4
Church Ijurnlier 5
Church ITumber 6
Church ITumber 7
Church number 8
Church Eurnber 9
Church ITumber 10
Church ITvmiber 11
Probably 75 Persons
7 or 8 Families
35 or 40 "
Perhaps 20 Persons
On the ba.sis of the foregoing, and v/ith the
elimination of duplicated names, the number of individual
fajuilies kno^Ti to the different agencies does net probably
exceed two thousand.
Re. "CHARITY IH SCRAITTOIT" Survey.
First q.uestion: program -
The chief need - ffuinlly rehab il it e.t ion - involving new ways of working
set of purposes ancl enclso
Where is the fault.
W hat is l acking.
Chief fault with the co.:r-'unlty .
Confidential exchange for varying agencies.
The new way:
1. Constructive working with families- relief may or
fraay not play a part.
2» Definite planning in \,'hat a nuraher of societies or
(agencies play a part.
3. Econoiay of effort - toward permanent improvement.
4. Analogous to the organizer of a new business
I enterpris e.
(The family brings together right circumstances,
proper co-ordination, exact amounts and kinds
of service to reduce hardships. )
5. Discovers underlying difficulties in the individual
family, -no question- of "worthy" or "unv/orthy".
69 Seeks accurate information from relatives, ^
employers-old & new
7. Proper v/orking out of the problem .
1st. Joint planning of different societies and
individuals in t common scheme or program.
(Present agencies co-operate in dealing with
fc-milies and throv/n out atoms.
<.■ .ij*j J .- 3
( ( T*- - r
u ; ■
^ork of the Scranton Poor Board
Our attention was early called by members of
the Board of Directors of the Scranton Poor District to
the fact that there have been heavy increases in the
expenditures for public outdoor relief in the last twelve
years. Vith the assistance of the United States Census
Bureau in giving us yearly estimates of the probable
increase of population in Scranton, it has been possible
to make a comparison between increase in population and
increaee in outdoor poor relief.
Year Popu- Per Cent. Poor Board Per Cent
la t ion Increase P.elief Increase
1900 102.251 116,727.94-
1905 116,939 14.30 17,541.36 4.90
1910 130,436 11.54 22,727.72 29.99
1913 138,621 6.30 34,414.23 47.
During this period from 1900 to the close of
1913 there has been an increase in population of 35 per
cent;- and an increase in outdoor poor relief of IO5.80
Table number 1, accompanying the original of
this rei.ort, graphically snows this comparison.
ITrom the records at ha.nd, it is impossible to
make any deduction of value. There are no public
records showing the list of beneficiaries prior to
October, I91I. It is imjossible, therefore, to even
trace the number of persons or farailies which have
been receiving public aid over an extended period.
The largest degree of commendation should go
to the present Board and its efficient Secretary for
having introduced a system in what v-a^s before a most
badly tangled situation, but before complete efficiency
can come, it will be necessary for a radical change
of policy to be introduced in one direction.
V/e will lead up to that by saying that not
the slightest deductions of general value can be ob-
tained from a reading of the records v^hian have been
maintained since I9II.
The items indicated by the record cards for
families, cover Kaine, Address, Age, Place of Birth,
How Long in Country, in State, in District, Rent,
Present Income, Condition, Physical - Mental,
Occupntion, Last Employed, Single, Married or Widowed,
Children and Ages, Cause of Destitution, Each one of
these items has only a. half line for entry. Even if
all the items were always filled out, it would be
necesBar;> to have far more data and information regarding
the families before reaching inferences of the slightest
valu.e with reference to social conditions. But even
this very meager standard for data is not attained to.
Out of 846 cards of the families receiving relief during
1913. only 229 cards, or less than 20 per cent, of the
whol e number, have even the residence given. A saiiiple of
tne filling out is here given, the name being eliminated.
ITame, S. Mrs. Anna Age 24
Residence. . . .No Entry
Place of Birth ¥0 Entry. .. .Nationality. .Russian
How Long in Countr;y? . .Ho Entry.. In State^.llo Entry .. In. .. .
District?. . .¥.0 Entry
House Rent Paid per Month. .!|6. . .Present Incone. .ITo Entry..
Con':3ition-Physical. .No Entry .. .Mental. .ITo Entry
Occupation. .No Entr^- . . . , .Last Employed. . .'-o Entry
Single, Married or Widowed Read or ^f'rite?.Fo Entr}?...
Cause of Destitution. .. .Husband Killed,
In addition to the public records kept upon
the cards as indicated, the Directors haTe private records
kept in books. These records for the period before
October 19II are not in the custody of the Poor Board.
V.'e have been permitted to examine these priva.te records,
and find that while they pretty generally give the
residence, there is not much additional information.
Erom these private records it is possible
to indicate in a very rough way tne presence of
certain factors or conditions in the fsjnily. But
it must be remembered that in a majority of cases
these simply appear upon the records as the statements
of the applicants themselves.
In 810 of the families given relief in 1913
the following factors appear:
PER CENT. OE TOTAL
Husband in jail
Husband won't work
This data comprises whatever there is of
social significance upon the records as now kept.
They furnish absolutely no bases upon which any comments
whatever may be made upon the present situation and the
increase in public oiitdoor relief. For instance, they
furnish no data upon which may be presented a picture of
the underlying factors behind widowhood. Furthermore,
there is not the slightest doubt but that from one to
three of these factors might appear in the same families.
Here we have them listed one factor per fajnily.
Methods of Application
Of the 84-8 families who wei'e given outdoor
relief in 1913i I85 applicants appeared tefore the
Poor Board in regular session for a hearing. We wish
to say a word later about this plan of public hearings,
but v/ould draw attention at this point to the fact that
the remainder of the 848 families were being carried along
upon the booics on tJie basis of previous applications
and without systematic review of present needs and con-
ditions. We understand that in emergency circumstances
a Director may act without reference to the Board, but
the vrhole plan snows plainly that when once there is
favoraole action, it is possible for a family to continue
along receiving month by month tne amount first agreed
upon. An examination of the monthly payments, while
indicating some changes in amounts, and not without
certain complete eliminations of particul^^r families,
shows that they run along pretty uniformly. In one
case we confirmed the fact that a grant originally
made for three months only, has been continued along
since August 19II.
Before proceeding on to a consideration of the
need for further systematization, wf wish to emphatically
urge that the system of pulolic hearings is a disgrace
to the city and should te ijiiinediately abolished. In
doing this ?i'e wisn to call attention to the fact that
the reason for the existence of this archaic systeni may
be fairly Mvell traced. It is due to the fact that
court decisions have indicated that the discretion of
granting outdoor relief is one to "be exercised by the
whole Board of Directors rather than by any one of its
members acting alone. We shall later show how this
interpretation may be lived up to without the personal
and public appearance of applicants before a Board of
seven men. Under such circujnstances it is impossible
for either the Board or the a,pplicant to understand
each other. It will interest the Board and this
community to know that some of the most self-respecting
of the women who have been visited have spoken of the
torture which this method of application brought to them
and the fact that they would not undergo it again,
no matter v/hat v/ould happen to then. In the many cities
which I have visited I cannot remember a sin^ile one in
which this method is maintained either by a public or
private agency. That is so far as the United States
is concerned. I icnov/ of its existence in one Canadian
city. This will indicate now archaic it is, and why
it is on- of the worst blots upon existing charitable
work in this city.
Further Illustrations of the ITeed
There have been no others franker than the
Directors of the Poor Board in indicating their dis-
satisfaction witn present conditions. There has
"been a general realization of the need of iraproveruent
in certain directions.
It has required but a slight scratching of
the surface to discover illustrations of this need.
In one case a widow with three children
under fourteen received flOOO insurance at the time
of her husband's death. Some of this \"ent for funeral
debts, etc., but she at once applied for foor Board relief
and received ^^ laonthly. Since then she has again
married, and has been receiving relief regula-rly ever
since the marriage.
In another instance, there is a widovr who, accord-
ing to the records of the Poor Board, has three children.
Local information is to the effect that there are also
two step-children of working age. One is a son who
contributes nothing to the family budget, the other is a
daughter who is at work. No effort had been ma,de to
induce then to contribute to the family budget.
In another case, thei^e is a young v/idow with
two children under fourteen. She ovms her own hone,
upon which there is an indebtedness of flOO or $200.
She has received $5 fo^ atout six months. She made
application about a month after tne death of her husband.
There was living with her at the time a near relative,
a man who was opposed to her asking for poor relief.
It was also stated that she had a mortgage on another
house for $1,000, and a small aiaovnt of money in the
bank. She is a healthy, strong woman.
Then v,?e have another deserting husband who
has returned, with one daughter working and still
the family is on the list.
In another instance, there is a widow living
with her son and his wife, who can easily support her,
and there is no need for the order.
There is one faraily in which there are two
children, the husband doing very little work. This
family should be dealt with in other ways. It is
probable that no public relief should be extended.
The Inherent Weaknesa
Tile inherent weakness in the whole system,
lies in the fact that the members of the Board, while
giving only part tirae to the work and justly and legally
"being required to do nothing more, are responsible for
v/hat cannot possibly be accoiaplished under such a plan.
We would add a word to the effect that one member does
give full time in tne office of the Board. They have
neither the tiiue nor opportunity to keep in constant
touch witn all the families in tneir charge. Their
local neighborhood knowledge would be of the greatest
value in supplementing the results of systematic inves-
tigation. That these are required and must be obtained
is one of the absolute certainties of the situation.
Limitations upon Gra nts
The monthly amounts given to fajiiilies bear
little relation whatever to the size of the families
involved, or to the resources of these families.
The amounts run from 13 "to $8. In one instance we
have run across a case v.-here $10 has been given and
there may be other instances, but they are unusual.
Herewith we present s. table showing the
monthly average grant for families of different sizes
TAELE SHCV'IITG SIZE O'F GRAITTS FOR PAIIILIES
OF DIFFEEEIIT SIZES
ilumcer of :
Under 14 :
: $8.00 :
It is gratifying to note that as betv/een the
%i5 ^-^d. !^6 groups there are increases in percentages
in favor of ^6 as the number of children increases.
But, of course, this is a very slight divergence between
incoiaes when one considers the increased outgo which is
indicated. It will be observed that the $5 s-i^'i $6
groups compose about 74 per cent, of the total number
of families indicated in tnio table. About 14 per cent.
is found in the lower $3 ^"'^ $4 groups.
Under the present scheme of things, it
is necessary for the Poor Board to have certain
understood limitations upon grants, even though
the Board is not so limited by legal restrictions.
If the practice had not grown up, it is certain
that expenditures of this sort would have increased
far iiiore than they have. Even with the best possible
system, public relief boards are always heavily
handicapped by the attitude of many families towards
them. That is, there is a feeling that one has a
right to demand relief because the money is raised
by public taxation. Under a system which does not
moHt minutely determine the exact size of the
relief bur'len in each particul'^r instance, which does
not definitely ascertain that all who should naturally
help in the support of a family are doing so and
are in occupations which fairly measure up to their
earning capacity, which does not see that private
agencies are interested when they should oe in
carrying part of the burden, wnicn does not see that
any bad tendencies in the health of the family are
checked, which does not see that possible character
deterioration is looked a.fter, it woxild be possible
to make, in good faith, increasing grants from
year to year without accomplishing more than is
Traditionally, not only are the ajnounts of
relief limited, but a.ls o the forru. Relief is given
in the shape of grocery orders. In tliis artificial
way, therefore, room is left for the activities of
private agencies. The trouble is, however, that
it in a perfectly artificial and illogical division
and no one knows whether other relief needs are satisfied
Even under present conditions, I believe that
more attention should be paid to greater variation in
grants according to the sizes of the farailies. Of
course, this would still be a mechanical operation and
could not involve an accurate deteraiination of what the
Board should grant in each case. But nothing re-
sembling an accurate determination is now possible.
All that it mav be said can be accomplished by seeing
that the families with from four to eight children
receive regularly more than those v^itn. from one to
four children, is that in some instances needs would
be a little more adequately met.
At the same time let us re-emphasize the
fact that it is easily possible for the Poor Board
to have taken an attitude and followed a policy in
tne past wnich would have dried up the streams of
personal relief given in this city. ilo more
disastroiis result can be imagined. The contact of
private agencies and private individuals with the
lives and homes of those who have fallen more or
less out of rank is as necessary a.s tne existence of
political parties. No matter hov/ good may be city,
count}', state and national fi.diaini strations, there still
remains the need of the existence of political parties,
which must be independent of financial control. So
it is in relief. No natter hoT»' good may be the
administration of public poor relief, there is the
need of the constant new and fresh observation of
"hat is happening an'iong those who have fallen to
the rear and what are the causes behind these
happenings. No group of officials can stand alone
in this most important field of all so far as
community, life is concerned. It is because there
has been too great a tendency in this direction in
Scranton that the need of comprehensive constructive
work with families has been so little sensed.
Unrestricted and unobserving private benevolence
is one of the greatest possible evils. But an
even greater one v'ould be the turning over absolutely
of the care of straggling families to a public board.
Its effect upon individual and community life v^ould
i-e harmful to a. degree wnich can be scarcely appreciated,
¥.0 matter how elaborate may be other schemes for social
betterment, nothing can take the place of this
fundamental contact with fiondarnental family difficulties,
It is not only a question of developing intelligent
sympathy but of accurately knowing living conditions
and the methods of dealing witn personal weaknesses and
the social needs instead of dealing in generalizations
which today are responsible for tremendous waste of
both time a.nd money.
Public Outdoor Relief in Other Cities
I"or purposes of co;npariaon, we here present
the figures of public outdoor relief in some cities
near the si?.e of Scrainton. In the selection of
these cities, we have tried to secure different
types and it will be observed they are located
in different parts of the country. It is needless
to say in advance that such a co.iiparison in itself
must not be given weignt as an indictment against
the size of outdoor poor relief in the Cit;^' of
Scranton. No one of the cities is similar to
Scranton in it^ make-up, though soj::e are of an
industrial character. Comparisons of this sort
are only to be considered in connection with the
presentation of other data indicating the need
of better methods of work. Standing by themselves
they have very little, if any, significance.
TABLE SKOV.'I^^G PUBLIC OUTDOOR PJ'LIF? AND
POPULATIO^J 07 DIPFEl^EITT CITIES
Few Haven, Conn.
AllDany, r. Y.
Elizateth, II. J.
Public Outdoor Relief
Tliere is an appro-
priation of $3000
made for Visiting
Cost of Living
In the consideration of the increases in
public outdoor relief in Scranton from 19OO to
1913. it must be borne in mind that doubtless
during these years, the increased cost of living
has had its effect in slowly increasing the
So, too, consideration must be given
to the fact that increases in population have come
largely through immigration which has becoi.ie more
varied. There is, of course, no v/ay, however,
of determining how far the records of nationalities
have changed in connection with the activities of
the Poor Board because of the lack of individual
records before I9II.
The Larger Reason
Taking into consideration the wastes
in relief made possible by lack of a completed and
adequate system, I do not for one moment wish to
indicate that that gives an explanation for increasing
expendil.ui-es . To begin with, it is impossible at
this time to indicate what would have been fair
expenditures under the present condition of things
in this city. For while we have indicated that
it is ack owledged that relief has been wasted with
some families, ^^^e have also sufficiently indicated
that larger amounts shoiAld have been given to others.
nothing short of from two to four years of continuous
and complete family rehabilitation work will be
sufficient to in'Ucate what should be and what might
have been the proper share of responsibility for the
Scranton Poor Board.
V/hatever may be the eventual equalization,
let it be remembered that the fault lies, and we
again come back to the sar:ie theme, in the lack of
proper coinprehension of what was required for family
rehabilitation. 7/hatever excessive public expenditures
may have been made could be la.id today to the gradual
accumulation of unsolved family problems which have
been piling up with increased rapidity during the last
decade or thirteen years.
A great majoriti/ of families pull themselves
out of the rut tut each year soiiie are sinking below the
line, and each year sees an increase of those who are
staying below the line. In the natural order of
events, relief expenditures should keep on increasing
and by their very increase should encourage even
greater expenditures because no large and constructive
plans lie behind.
If it is possible to impress even upon a
fe-^r the one idea that the first duty lies with the
private citizens of Scranton in more actively
developing the social efforts of the private agencies
and particularly one, and does not and cannot lie
with the Scranton Poor Board, there will be definite
improvement by slow degrees. If tnis impression
is not made, all else which is sugi;\ested in this
report will be of no avail because the foundation
will be lacking.
No Honual Family Should Be in Hillslcle Home
There is one matter practiced on the part
of the Poor Board which may easily be changed at once.
V/e refer to the practice of adiuitting normal families
to Hillside Home and permitting them to stay there for
indefinite periods. This hns been done in violrition
of the statutes prohibiting the keeping of children in
alriishouses for longer periods than sixty days. We do
not here intend to enter into a discussion of Hillside
Home because that will be taken up in a special report,
but this particular matter is really connected with
the outdoor poor relief work because here the solution
can be found. At the present time, for instance,
there is a widow with three children who has been in
the almshouse since August of last year, a child having
been born later. There is one other case resembling
this in general details. According to present usage
there is nothing to prevent the faxaily staying there
for an indefinite period. In a third instance, the
physical condition of the mother is involved and the
mental condition of one of the children but it ia by
no means definitely detenained whether the family
shoiild not be re-established in a home of its ovm.
We here reacn the crux of the whole matter.
Hice and comfortable as are the general conditions at
the Hillside Home, no one will gainsay that a
public institution of this sort affords nothing
nonnal to a faciily or that the children's contact
with abnormal people can be anything but harmful
tc the children. An attempt should be made in
all instances of tnis sort to have a careful
investigation made, to secure as far as possible
the co-operation of other agencies and to re-
establish the families in homes even if the tra-
ditions regarding size of grants made by the
Poor Board are broken under these special condi-
tions. We are not here referring to temporary
shelter. We realize the feeling which prompts the
corranitment of all of the chil'iren so that they may
remain v-it'ri the mother. We doubt whether this
shoulo be done as often as it is done. But whatever
may be said of this practice, there is nothing to
be said in defense of the practice of permitting
the families to lin£,er long after the immediate
emergency has passed ^r/ithout any definite planning
for the rehauilitaticn. As it stands now the
period may be extended up to a time when the mother
in desperation itiakes attempts of her own which may
or may not be wise, looking towards re-establishment.
Total Co3t of Public Ou t door Re lief
Heretofoi'e ia speaking about public outdoor
relief, '"'6 have bee^n dealing with the actual expenditures
for relief and not the total cost. The figure which
we have given for 1913. to wit, $34,^14.23, includes
just thi-ee items, one of f464.60 for transportation
furnished to non-residents, $1500 for the salaries of
five outdoor physicians, and the remainder being paid
out for provision orders.
It is, of course, difficult to accurately
divide adiainistrat io>n and office expenses of a
Board in charge of a very large institution like
Hillside Ho^'ae and also in charge of an outdoor
relief system. Halving all expenses outside of
the Hillside Home and charging one-half to outdoor
relief expenses, gives aa ite.a of $7,777.63, or
a total cost for outdoor relief of $42,191.86.
Special Care and Appropriationa
The following appropriations are made by the
Directors to private societies in the city:
Associated Charities and Humane
Day Nursery 500 • 00
District Nurses' Association 900.00 :ipl,900.00
For the per diem care of city charges
in special institutions the follovring expenditures
Children in Homes |!1720.37
Insane, State and Other
Feeble Minded and Training
Kiscellaneous 8^.00 2. ^97. ^^
The Associated Gnaritie s and Huinane Society
The Constitution of the Associated Charities,
adopted in l393. presents the following as its
To secure the concurrent, harmonious
action of the different charities of Scranton
in order to raise the needy above the need of
relief, prevent begging and imposition, and
diminish pauperisia; to encourage woric, self-
dependence and iadustry through friendly inter-
course, advice and sympathy, and to aid the poor
to help thejiiselves ; to prevent children from
growing up as paupers; to aid in a diffusion
of knovfledge on subjects connected with the
relief of the poor,
AND TO ACCOia>LISH THESE OBJECTS, IT IS DESIGi^IED
1. To provile that the case of every applicant
for relief shall be thoroughly investigated.
2. To place the results of such investigation
at the disposal of tne Secretary of the Poor Board,
of charitable societies and agencies, and of private
persons of ioenevolence.
3« To obtain employment, if possible; if not,
to obtain, so far as necessary, suitable assistance
for every deserving applicant from public authorities,
charitable agencies or benevolent institutions,
4. To make all relief, either oy alins or
charitable work, conditional upon good conduct and
5. To send to each poor fainily, under advice
of proper autnorities, a friendly visitor.
5. To hold public meetings and print papers
In 1905 the society was incorporated as "The
Associated Charities and Hufiiane Society of Lackawanna
In this charter it is stated:
2nd. The purpose of this corporation
is the manageiiient and direction of such of the
public charities of the County of Lackawanna,
State of Pennsylva-iia, as may be entrusted to
it, together with general philanthropic and
With certain modifications the statement of
purposes in the Constitution covers substantially
the whole field of fanily rehabilitation. The
more general stateruent in the charter is, of course,
both indefinite and yet broad. It is significant,
ho".".'ever, that the application for a charter was made
at a tijfte when growing worx in this direction made
it desirable for the Society to becone a corporation
which might have the custody of children and which
might become a quasi public agency in connection
with work belonging to a Huinane Society.
In an examination of the work it is revealed
that no strict separation oC this Humane Society work
from the ordinary work witn fainilies is made.
The annual report for the year closing
December S^st, 1.913. indicates that the following
came to the attention of the Society.
Single Woaen with
Of these 1706 we learn that IO32 made
personal application and 486 were referred by
individuals. There were 15 referred by attorneys
and magistrates, 33 ^y 'the truancy department, and
7 by the schools to other departiuents. Visiting
Nurses referred 12, societies 27, institutions 42
and churches 28.
We find that temporary employment was
secured in 68 instances and permanent employment in
50. The figures given in the remainder of this
paragraph are fro.i the annual report for I912, the
figures not being completed for the fiscal year of
1913. which has juat ended. They will be substantially
the same for that year. We find that legal advioe
and services were given in 261 instances, marriages
were arranged for in 15 ■ that 199 persons were
arrested, that 133 were taken to the Juvenile Court,
that there were 267 children on probation and that
transportation was arranged for through the Poor Board
in 79 instances. There were I96 coimnitted to various
institutions, exclusive of hospitals.
With the exception of the employment figures
which pertain to both si-ps of the work, the figures
given in the last paragraph apply most particularly,
though not entirely, to the Humane sile of the work.
The data with reference to the straignt Jaraily side
is not, 30 detailed. We are still referring to the
report for I912. Here are so;;ie of the figures.
Hedical aid was secured for 52. Nurses were secured
for 61. There were I38 referred to churches and I68
to the Poor Board. There is also a 3tate::ient regard-
ing investigations which reads as follows:
Found Worthy and Aided through
Various Charities l664
Found Unworthy or not in Heed 124 1788
In connection with the Faiiiily work, it should also be
added that 80 persons were referred to hospitals and
that burials were secured through the Poor Directors
in 7 instances. There were 39 lost children
restored to parents, 26 were prevented from begging,
there were 64 references to truant officers.
Taking all of these figures in the large
they are significant of the development of tne Society
upon the Hmnane side. Beneath the surface there are
other indications. Thus it is apparent that the
large number of investigations referred to have
centered arrjund questions of material relief only
and there is nothing in the records to indicate
but that they have been of a superficial character.
Turning to the first paragraoh on page 45, we observe
the quite limited nuriiber of references of persons to
the Society by other Societies and by institutions,
churches and the visiting nurses. Observe in the
next paragraph that we deal in figures like 261,
199 1 133 ill connection with law matters in addition
to the 267 children on probation. So also the I96
coriimitted to various institutions exclusive of
hospitals. Compared to the ordinary figures of an
Associated Charities which is not doing the legal
Humane work, this figure is quite large. Coming to
the next paragraph, the reference of I38 to churches
and 168 to the Poor Board is not indicative of the
working out of co-operative plans but a simple
transfer of relief responsibility. Tuedical aid
and the use of nurses are far below the ordinary mark.
It has been impossible to gather useful
data froai tne records of the. Society which are
extre::iely meager and give us no basis to work upon.
The staff of the Society has much information re-
garding fainilies but it is in the heads of the
individual workers. No more costly or uneconomic
policy can exist tnan one wnich does not provide
sufficient help for the proper keeping of records.
Even the i.iost efficient and experienced worker,
after years of experience, may oecojrie confused as
to the exact significance and relative importance
and corroborative foundation of the iiiipressions and
facts or alleged facts regarding individual faailies
which she may be treasuring in her raind. In the
course of the special investigation referred to in
Part II of this Report, we had one or two interesting
illustrations of this possible confusion. The
gravest injustices, here we are speaking generally,
have been and are being done to feuuilies by reason
of their changed condition's not being known to a
particular worker and by reason of the ordinary
mental processes by which a superficial impression
of a family becoifies later on, an outstanding and
prominent fact, without any corroboration whatever.
The difficulties attendant upon the
proper presentation or any sort of presentation
of the work of an Associated Charities through
figures of tnis sort are a constant and heavy
problem with societies which have tne completest
records. Therefore it would be idle to attach
great significance to the figures of a society
with an inadequate staff excepting as they may be
confirraed by the general condition of the social
work and the inferences which may be drawn from .
other soxxrces. It is apparent that sohie of the
most important agencies in the city are not co-
operating in the planning for individual fajnilies.
There is no decisions coiwaittee of the kind before
indicated. The habit of working together is
nowhere apparent. We have seen that thex-e is a certain
arfiount of so-called referring of fsuiiilies, but limited
as it is, it does not represent aiiy actual and careful
co-operation in joint actioi. Nor need I say that the
ter^vis "worthy" and "unworthy" in themselves indicate
the lack of constructive planning. We have already
^ere lies the fundan;ental difficulty?
It lies in the fact that into the hands of one
worker with souie assistants there have iDeen left
the burdens which could not be possibly carried
by anyone. All exterior evidences point to an
appreciation of the special fornis of service to
which the General Secretary of the Associated Charities
and Humane Society has given of necessity particular
and prolonged attention. The Probation and Hiimane
work in themselves are more than enough to occupy
the full ti:ue of an executive. It is necessary that
this work should be conserved and it is equally necessary
that there oe proper development by the Society in
becominii,' the co-ordinating and co-operating center
through which steady progress may be made in family
V'e shall not at this point consider the
working out of tnis problem but wish first to comment
upon the work of the other agencies previously mentioned.
Furthermore, the Poor Board and the Associated Charities
problems must be considered together.
The Jewish Charities
The United Hebrew Charities is a combination
of what was formerly the Immigrants' Aid Society and
a work with homeless men. It has an annual expenditure
of about |2000,
On the Family relief side it claims to relieve
such families as the Hebrew Ladies' Ail Society, later
referred to, cannot handle on account of limited funds.
In other words, if a family is going to require any
considerable ajaoimt, they turn it over to this organiza-
tion, which is a men's society. There are no records
kerjt and they are on the point of adopting a system by
which the few details regarding fa»aily history which
they gather will oe put on check stubs and each administra-
tion will carry off its own stubs.
Out of a Jewish population of about 80OO,
it is claimed by this organization that there are not
over 50 families being aided by all the societies
The Society furnished board and lodging in
1913 to 270 transients at a cost of ^241. They
paid for 4 funerals at a cost of $122. The svun of
#165 was paid to traveling rabuie. On tne Family
relief side, IO3 checks were issued aiaounting to i|835«
While this shows a total expend! tui'e of only a little
over •iJl300, we understand that through .special collec-
tions for very special family emergencies involving
large amount a, the amount of about $2000 is reached.
On the Lnraijrant Aid side, they are advised
"by Ellis Island, or rather by an i:xmiigrant society
■ there, of all Jewish iiuitiigrants who have Scranton for
a destination. They are looked up upon arrival and
advised and helped as may be necessary. In a private
way this snail group of men have arranged with certain
wholesale dealers to send them such people as they
think need their help to get started in business in a
small way. Usually there are about 15 persons who
have accounts with the wholesale dealers which are
underwritten by this group. There is also a small
loan society having a capital of about $1000.
Losses are made up by dues of 25^2' a month collected
from members and through collections.
The Hebrew Ladies' Relief Association
expended $400 in relief during 1913. helping 38
families. Records are kept in a small notebook.
The officers of tnis Society are extremely dis-
satisfied with present conditions, 'claiming that they
are imposed upon, and other Jewish societies and
organizations are ijirposed upon because there is very
little co-operation and very little understanding of
the proper way to work with families.
As we have proceeded further in this inquiry
we have heard of other special organizations which
we have been unable to follow. Also we are unable to
report as to the exact aiuount of Faiaily care which may
be done by societies connected witli synagogues.
On the part at least of sorae of those
interested there is a strongly expressed desire for a
coiuprehensive federation wit a an officer giving full
time to the woric. The question of a federation must,
of course, be worked out by the Jewish coiauiunity itself.
In the event that steps are taken in this directici, it
may be possible to suggest a working arrangement with
the Associated Charities which will be mutually beneficial.
The need for federation is indicated with
reference to the development of the ordinary work with
families. It is quite evident from the above that the
efforts along constructive lines, as indicated in the
loan society, the helping of small .tradesmen to start
in business, and the raising of large amounts of money
for special purposes, are far ahead of siiuilar efforts
in the city at large.
St. Vincent de Paul Conferences
The previous tables show that in 19 13
at least $3»296.31 ^^^ collected foe relief yiirposes.
This is an aoproxiraate amount for the reason that all
of the conferences have not yet made their returns.
The tables also sao'V that at least 137 famuli es were
There are 55 '^^'^ on the roll of tne conferences
and 1212 visits were made by them during the year. There
were 14 situations secured and 99 ooys received special
instructioa of soiue sort,
For the information of those who have not had
previous Knowledge of this society, it may be stated
that in dealing with families the actions of the
conferences and of individual members are marked by a
great deal of practical sense and sound wisdom. It
is an entirely voluntary organization, and yet as be-
tween conferences here in the city it ha.3 maintained
a scheme by whicn the crossing of lines in an
accidental way by two or more conferences with particular
faiailies has been obviated. It is strong in holding
up to full responsibility the members of individual
faiiiily groups. As will be observed from the above
figures, it has developed two special lines of
constructive woi-k, thougn on the employment siie,
this appears to be soraewhat limited. It has always
been our experience that whenever lines of larger
co-operation have been actually developed the members
of conferences are always prepared to do their part.
The policy of tne society in other places has been
generally against the plan of registering the families
in a confidential bureau, but generally in favor of
exchaaging information for mutual benefit with other
societies interested, and in having representatives
upon the decisions conmiittee previously referred to.
We understand that their co-operation with the
Associated Charities here has been close.
A Woman's Auxiliary to this society takes
no part in the visiting or in the decisions regarding
the care of families but assists in raising money for
the uses of tne society.
The Salvation Arjny reports a total
expenditure of about 15.000 for all departments of
their work. There will oe later included the state-
ment no^'!' beiiig prepared showing the aiaoiint used on
the ?ainily side. The methods of the Army require
weekly, quarterly and aanual reports made to
National Headquarters, on relief work, in addition
to the other activities. Relief has been given
for various purposes and in different forms. There
are, hov^ever, no individual records of families. There
is evidently intim^^te knowledge of the conditions exist-
ing in particular families and a recognition of the
need of constructive work, but the absence of any
plan for exchange of information plainly revealed in
one case the need of correction of certain facts re-
garding a family from the records of other societies
or a satisfactory refutation of the records elsewhere
found. The officers feel that under the present
unorganized conditions they are required to carry
heavier burdens on this side of the work than normally
belong to them. They :ire evidently ready for a
Volunteers of Ajaeric a
This organization is no at deeply interested
in the proposition for esta'olishing a Doarding-home
for working girls, which is recognized as being
a pressing need by other persons who have been in
touch with girls who could not maice use of the boarding
facilities of the Y. W. C. A.
In connection with Family work they have reported
to us that they have been in contact with 66 families
and have found employment for 28 men.
So far as the Protestant churches are con-
cerned, it is not necessary to discuss their Fan-iily
work in detail, We have previously presented some
figures showing the ntmi'Der of families known to them
and the general size of their relief fund. We have
obtained froui the churches inf or-iat ion of value re-
garding soi.'ie of the fainilies about which we inquired,
TOiat it is important to consider is just
what relations the church -^ork should bear to a more
co-operative working alon.g the plans later indicated.
If a church desires to, it may work through
an Associated Charities to the extent of offering
relief and service in their many co-ordinated plans,
but witn the Associated Charities serving as the center.
In other words, it may transfer responsibility there and
do its part as it can in the plans worked out after
Or it may simply transfer such responsibility
in the case of any new families coming to its attention,
or in the case of families not considered to strictly
belong to the church congregation.
Or it may, with or v/ithout transferring
complete responsibility in the alternative just
indicated, arrange to hold primary responsibility
with its other fajnilies while working with the
Associated Charities in harmony with whatever plans
have been developed by the Associated Charities or
other specific societies or individuals.
So far as possible, churches should be
induced to register families in a confidential exchange
but this will always be far from complete.
Churches which are doins any extensive Paiiiily
work should be represented upon the decisions conanittee
already spoken of.
Churches whose work is restricted to occasional
care in connection with a few faiiiilies may be brought
into consultation when those particular families come
up in connection witn the activities of other societies.
These consultations may be between the church and general
secretary of the Associated Charities or by a representative
of tne church being inv^ited to a meeting of the decisions
cOiMmittee at which the probleras of the particular fajnily
are to be confidentially considered.
In no one of the alterraatives above offered
is it assumed that the cnurch will lose its contact with
families and ho...e life, but that in some instances it
will lose it where responsibility belongs elsewhere, and
that in otner instances the contact will be more fruitful
because based upon larger knowledge and upon more com-
Greater church co-operation, however, must
depend upon an enlargement of the work of the Associated
With such enlargement, the degree of co-
operation between it and an individual church must be
worked out in each individual case. What I mean to
indicate is that no scheme of general church co-operation
can be worked out and plastered down on the community.
Any attempts in this direction are always met with
increasing opposition and at the best very partial success.
No church, however, can afford to assu-ne a position of
aloofness and demand that it oe left alone in its own
corner wit-i its own fai.iilies. In the first plp.ce it
is impossible for it to accurately determine whicn are
its cffn families if it does not know what others are
doing. In the second place, no church worker, nor
for that matter any otner single worker, ca'i attempt
to do tne many different kinds of service required in
individual families. For the sake of tne families
themselves, it is necessary that it should be part
of tne associative scheme of things and in the main
Pennsylvania Association for the Blind
This association h s no relief work, but it
will "De remembered that we are here dealing with "S'aniily
care and tnat therefore it should oe considered under
this part. The Branch h-as only been organized since
Hovember, 191^. but it already has acco.aplished some
One of its main purposes is the industrial
traininj; of the olind and their placement thereby in gainful
occupatio'is. The Branch has given us a list of the blind
persons known to it and what has been accomplished in
These occupations appear:
Selling -Brooms 2
Bead Work 2
Piano Tuning 2
In each instance, only one occuoation per
person is indicated, though training has often been
along several lines. Altogether since the opening
of the Kuloerry Street headquarters, this Brancn has
been the means of placiag $1335«04 as wage earnings
into the hands of 26 blind persons. The larger
industry has, of course, been 'broom-making. In at least
three instances, the Branch has "been the means of restoring
or partially restoring eyesight through the aid of
In a city 'mica has placed too much emphasis
upon simple relief giving, there is amoral taught
in this distinctly constructive work with this apparently
less helpable group. It involves the :iost careful study
of individual education, character and aptitude a.3 a basis
for a deteri.'iination of the kind of occupation and training
which is possible and x-^r^-cticable . The Branch is but
in its earlivst infancy and final results cannot no'v be
determined, but so far it has demonstrated that it should
have the fullest support in carrying on the work which
has been so well begun.
ITECESSARY DEVELOP: lElTT IN FAICILY CARE
Having in mind all that has been presented
in Parts II and III with reference to the present
status of Eanily care in this city, and what is
required for the best efficiency in tha,t field, let us
now consider the practical steps involved in the neces-
The Under-Reach ing of the S.i_tuat ion
In general terms it may be stated that V7hat
is required is an under-reaching of the situation.
The neglect of co-operative working in the past has
made it absolutely inipossiole to gain any clear per-
ception of just how big the problem is. In some
instances, after considerable digging, vte have un-
earthed a fair amount of information in the files and
tiie brains of the social workers of the cit^, but there
has been no joint sharing of this information nor joint
working together on the basis of it. Eut in a great many
instances, the information which may be obtained is either
superficial or is based u_'on an ancient, not present,
knowledge of the fariiily. This is sometimes worse than
nc kno'^ledge at all. The special investigations ^e have
made on our own accoujnt h«ve, of course, been extremely
limited in numuer. This vork has amply demonstrated
that there is a need for considerable development,
"but it would be idle for us to "base any eetiruate on the
size of the burdens to "be 'oorne "by individual agencies.
For the next year or so there must "be an under-reaching
of the situation, a careful, consistent digging do'/mwards
which T"ill but slowly change ideas and methods of work
as more is revealed and more is done.
How thifi under-reaching does not have to be
a special and out-of-the-crdinary process tut may "be
simply the following out of ordinary lines of permanent
The First Ste ps
The first steps are a consideration of how
the Associated Charities may be re-organized in such a
way aB to separate from it all except the straight
Family work and certain lines of children's -"^-ork: which
will oe later indicated. This would mean that the work
with waj^ward girls and other police cases should be com-
bined under Ivlrs. Du^gan witn the Probation work of the
Juvenile Court. There should be a separa.te secretary
of the Associated Charities. It is extremely unf ortxinate
that there should exist throughout the city a general
impression that this society-' is most intimately and closely
connected with these featuies of social work. The evidence
is prettv clear in our minds, evidence coming from many
quartern, that families are reluctant to go to the
Associated Charities in connection with ordinary
family troubles, oecause they, whether innocent or not,
are afraid that their children may be ta.ken from theni.
Of course, specific distrust of this sort is absurd.
Of course, there sre faruilies who do go to the office
in connection with ordinary difficulties, but the
trouble is that even v/hen they do, it is iinpossible to
guarantee that they will receive proper and coinprehensive
attention because the pressure of these other activities
in connection with people whose situations demand the
promptest and the most strenuous action, crowds to the
wall the continuous and prolonged attention which must be
given to families in their homes after the first emergencies
are met. The societ;> does look after first emergencies
but cannot follow them up thereafter.
Therefore, there can be no question but that
tiie wisest step is to make such re-arrangement as v/ill
separate the present kin'-js of work in which the society
is most involved, and which in themselves require the
constant attention of a trained executive, from the
family rehabilitation work v/hich must be developed.
In this way, not only do ve give opportunity for the
proper development of this latter work, but we do away
with the vital handicapping of it as it is now handi-
capped by its too close connection with a necessarily
important semi-official Humane work.
I may say that the combination of the v/ork of a
Humane Society vith an Associated Charities is a custom
peculiar to Pennsylvania. A number of societies organized
frorii ten to twenty years ago follow this plan. The
societies which have been organized during the last five
or six years have quite markedly departed from it. Here
in Scranton I have had fir^it opportujiity to observe what
may come oiit of such a connection. My strong opinion is
that where there is a. large amount of Evxaane Society vork
to do, it is most unv/ise to too closely connect the two
kinds of work, even though they may run into each other.
At the same time, I do not wish to suggest
a, plan v/hich might imply that another new society was
being added to those which might appeal for funds. My
recoiTLniendation would be that steps be taken to separate
the Associated Charities from the Humane Society but that
the same Board of Directors, technically different, should
serve for both societies, and that in connection with
financia.l appeals they should alv,rays jointly appeal.
Some other way out may appear tc be more
practi'cacle after this report has been carefully analyzed
by the coirmiittee to whicn it will be referred. That is,
80 far as tnis particular method of separation is concerned.
There can be no escape froj;. the need of a leader for the
Yrhat i3 Ijeeded in the yanily Work
Let us now take up the question of what
is now required for further development in the Family
In connection witn our discussion of "The
Chief Eeed in Scranton," v/e have spoken of all of the
factors required in connection with proper organization.
V/e will no'v consider what development is required in
order to bring,' up the local situation to the standa-rd
indicated. We follow the nximhering given on page 12
and succeeding pages.
(l) The first requirement is a confidential
exchange which has been universally demanded. As we
have shown, it will not in itself effect very much, but
in connection with co-operative Vvrorking, it will effect
a good deal. Let it be understood that a confidential
exchange does not require that detailed information aboiit
fax:iilies be registered, but simply the fact that a
particular agency or church is interested in them, so
that others later interested may know this. The
confidential exchange should be used by both societies
dealing with families and by all kinds of institutions.
It should also be used by hospitals so far as obtaining
information is concerned in connection v/ith free patients.
On tne other hand, it v-ould be impossible for the hospitals
to register all the c^'ses of this sort coming to them for they
would completely swamp the exchange or run up its
expenses treraendoiiBly . Not less than $1000 for the
first year would be required for such an exchange and the
cost should be divided among the public and private
agencies on the basis of the a/aount of service to each one.
Proia what we have said, it may not be evident just how
the exchange would serve institutions. It would serve
them by giving them sources of information regarding
persons seeking admission without the necessity of their
making complete investigations themselves. All inmates
should be registered, as this sometimes is of the greatest
service to societies which may be working with other
portions of the faxailies from which the inmates come.
Because of tne general interest in this
particulf^r thing, we have dwelt upon it at some length.
But let it be understood that while it would be of some
service, inaugurated and standing oy itself, it would
soon become ineffective if efforts were not being made
to organize co-operative planning and working behind it.
In itself, it is a mere mechanical device, which becomes
of the utmost value only when there in some personality
watching to see that its services are properly used, and
showing how they can ue used, in addition to being
connected with a society which is constantly developing
co-operation and a more careful working out of family
(2) Investigations must "oe made much more extensive
and must be properly and completely reported. Such
investigations are frequently impossible with the size of
the present staff and the work it is now doing, especially
on the Humane side. It is throwing monei' away to have
any time spent in investigation when the results of
investigation are not properly recorded. The very primary
reason why there is little which resembles planning
in connection with the hundreds of families knoTim to the
various societies, lies right here. There is far less
systematic information on file than would be required
by Dun or Eradstreet, for instance, in connection with
a business house with a capital of a few thousand dollars.
Even the simplest economic value involving the welfare of
a family group may easily measure up to the economic value
in proper knowledge of the credit which should be extended
to a Dusiness house of the kind indicated. This h-s no
reference, either, to the simple m«tter of juntice. If
we are not going to do. our v/ork with decent thoroxighness,
it hsd better not be done at all. Only eventually we will
find that it v.-ill have to be done thoroughly because of
the growing burdens.
(3) and (4) There has, of course, been considerable
co-operation developed through the Associated Charities,
but there is a tremendous lot to be done. Of systematic
working together along conmion plans by several agencies
there is practically nothing. There is no decisions
coDunittee at which the more difficult family problems
are considered. With the strongly marked geographical
divisions in the city, I believe it would be necessary
to eventually organize three or more such conmittees.
It is not necessary at this point to go into details
of the plan which must be slowly v/orked cut after tHe
reorga.nization of the society a.long the lines indicated.
(5) The question of volunteer service is alv;ays a
difficult one. I know that attempts have been made in
the past to develop this side of the work. I know a,lso
that many societies have had most discouraging experiences.
I k -ow further that in later years there have been renewed
attempts and that it's impossible for the jiiost work to
be accomplished unless there are sowe volunteers who will
carry out some details of the Pamily plans made, for there
are always more details to be carried out than can be by
a small group of paid workers. We have indicated on page
14 the community values of volunteer service and the
absolute need of it in order to awaken the community to the
need of taking definite steps for the changing of intolerable
(6) and (7) There is need of the systematization
of the information gathered whicii may serve to throw
light upon the specific points which Siiow bad social
conditions in any direction, and also to afford
illustrations of a concrete sort for the appeal to
those who raay not have sensed the need. For instance,
a conferehce should be arranged to "brintj together the
field v/orkers of the societies to consider v/hat point
should be covered on a card reporting the more obvious
housing and sanitation defects found in the houses
visited. These records should be turned in to the
Associated Charities, conbined with similar records
which their visitors would turn in, so that at a later
date a special coiiimittee may consider what, if any,
housing defects require the a-ttention of the municipality.
As we have already pointed cut, thei-e is need of attention
being given to the conditions surrounding the living in
basements of families in houses where there has been
sub-letting. The Associated Charities in the past
has figured considerably on this side. I think, however,
that tne plan of co-operative working in the systematization
of infoirnation has not been very much developed.
I should like to call attention to another
question, in which I believe there should be united action
on the part of the Associated Charities and other organiza-
tions. In 1913 the Legislature of Pennsylvania passed a
bill by which a ma-n sentenced for non-support might be
imprisoned at hard laoor and that a per diem of 65^
be paid to his family. Owing to the fact that no hard
labor is provided for the misdemeanants serving out
sentences in this County, it has been impossible for
this law to be carried out. Inasmuch as the
imprisonment in idleness of any person is morally
and economically a bad and wasteful process, this brings
up the question, naturally, of whether any reasonable
means for providing hard labor might be developed.
A brief has been submitted to me, showing that by the
Act of June 26, I895, P. L. 377, (Workhouses 4 Stewart's
Purdon 5190) the County Commissioners after having first
obtained approval of tv.'o consecutive Grand Juries and of the
Court of Quarter Sessions, may establish a workhouse of
which they shall have control, and may use any land
suitable already held by the County, or purchase others.
The other statutory references leading up
tc this are: Act of 1705 1 Sm ^G, Act of 21 February I767,
1 Sm 270. 2 Brightly Purd. 1479, Ed. I7OO-1872, Repealed
or Amended Act of L.ar. 3I, I860, P. L. 427, Section 79.
An Act of L-ay 25, I907, P. L. 247, (5 Stewart's
Purdon, 6142) provides that for the better employment of
prisoners and the iuiprovement of highways, every able-
bodied male prisoner in any jail or workhouse may be
required to do and perform eight hours of manual labor
each day except Sundays or holidays.
Labor to be classified, fixed and established
by the Prison Board under regulations approved by the
Court of Quarter Sessions. Sheriff and County Coimnissioners
constitute the Prison board.
I v.'ould call attention to the deeiraoility
of taking advantage of these statutes for the providing
of hard laoor, not only for non-supporters and deserters,
but for all short-teriii offenders. Public opinion is
steadily pointing to^wards the need of employiiient of all
persons under sentence, and the policy of paying a per
dieci to the families of the prisoners. Pro;:, the com-
paratively small ar.ioimt of data which we have been able
to gather, it is apparent that Desertion and Non-Support
figure very largely in the dependency of the city.
Even in the limited number of investigations
which were made, it became evident that with enlarged
investigations and better kept records, many questions
of school attendance and child labor will come to the
surface. These are going to require careful handling
with reference to individual violations, while at the
saiJie time, the infonuation thus gained should be at
the services of the CG:.ibined movement for better
legislation and administration.
I would recojiiiiend that the Poor Board at the
sarue time engage one visitor to work under the super-
vision of tne reorganized Associated Charities, or engage
the Associated Charities itself tc hire a worker for
the purpose, to begin an iiiimediate exaiaination of the
families now receiving public relief. This should
not be with reference to any irnj-nediate action of the
Board, but a taking up of the farailies, one by one,
and at the sanie time utilizing all the information
being gathered by the Associated Charities. There
should be a first set of investigations having to do
with the elimination of people v.'ho obviously should not
now be receiving relief. When this is accomplished,
each section of the city should be visited, and in
connection wit/i the other work of the Associated Charities,
an attempt should be made to gradually recommend to the
Poor Board such adjustments of grants as may appear to
be desirable in the light of the facts, the co-operation
of other individuals and societies, and the permanent
plans which may be under consideration. This process
v/ill take at least tv.'o years. At the end of that time,
it will be possible to form sor.ie idea of v/hat might be
considered reasonable appropriations for public outdoor
During the process of this plan of investi-
gation, I do not belieTe that the present system of
having applicants appear "before the Board in open
session should be continued. V-Oienever there is not
information at hand, obtained in the manner just
indicated, a statement of conditions of families
and recor/imendations should be made by the individual
director in the district in v/hicn the applicant lives,
to be presented by him to the Board for approval without
any personal appearance of the applicant.
With the accuruula-tion of information, it
will be necessar;y for the Poor Board to maintain a
more elaborate system of records, whicn should be
essentially in the same forru as that which may be
developed by the reorganized Associated Charities.
This means following the best business customs
in the use of the vertical filing syntem, and a
record card containing much more data than appear
on any set of cards in the city, as well as the
chronological record of investigations, consultations
and what has been acco;:iplished.
The Ends to "be Attained
The ends to be attained are:
(l) Equalization and readjustment in the outdoor
relief of the Poor Board, with the understanding that
it may later safely renove its present limitations
upon form of relief and size of grants. It may safely
give money for other things than food. It cannot, however,
consider any radical changes in this direction until prob-
ably at least two years have expired during which the ex-
amination of the field has been made.
(2) Reorganization on the private side through the
Associated Charities, which will mean that the work of co-
ordination, investigation, co-operation and treatment will
rest primarily witn the privately supported agencies.
It will also sen'^e to more efficiently supplement relief
given by the Poor Board, which under any circumstances
whatever must have limitations. We question whether
there has not been too great a concentratio*"' of relief-
giving through the Poor Board. We are entirely convinced
of the disastrous results of a greater concentration. It
is not necessarj' to argue this fact, however. We all
know that despite whatever theories we may hold, people
will insist upon individual participation in relief-
giving, and the only thing to do is to open up sensible
ways in v/hich they may be of assistance. This
paragraph, however, is not primarily concerned with the
relief-giving, but with the work of co-ordination, etc.
This, in essence, is something which must oe done by
private agencies. It must involve voluntary association
with no public aspect. It is necessary for it to be done
by a priva.te agency for no other reason, or no further
reason, than that private citizens as such must be in
iriimediate contact with the home conditions of the neglected,
and be prepared to fight the injustices v;hich may be
PAR T V.
CHILD - CAEIiTG
In the proposed reorganization of the Associated
Chs.rities, I v;ould recoanend that a children's coi.Jidttee
be created upon v/hich shoiild be representatives of the
institutions in the city dealing with children, as v;ell as
the representatives of other organizations, and the Associated
Charities itself. I would propose that this eoimriittee make
it a special care to develop a co-operative working in the
coKUiiunity probleius v/hicri may arise in connection with
children. It should have contact with the Pennsylva.nia
Child Labor Coriumittee, the Pennsylvania Children's Aid
Society and such other State org3,ni zations as may be
interested in this field.
One of the first problems which should be con-
sidered by this committee is the question of the better
systematization of the child-placing work done in this
city. The conditioas may be thus summarized.
The Associated Charities and Humane Society
placed out 19 children in 191^'. The degree of possible
supervision is indicated by these factsj
Neither foster parent nor child seen
during last eight months or year 4
Poster parent seen cut not child
during this period 5
Children came to office or were met in
some other accidental way 8
Child adopted by own uncle 1
Child seen about six months ago 1
Of this nuQljer only 5 ^^'^ been legally adopted
v/ith accoinpanying transfer of responsibility. The pnpers
in 3 other cases are just being ma^le out. The Poor
Board some years ago used to indenture without previous
probation period, so far as foster parents were concerned.
This was little short of a crime, but has been practically
abandoned. Only 2 children have been indentured during
tne last 3 years.
The House of the Good Shepherd also places out
children but we have no data as to number. There is no
From St. Patrick's Orphan Asyluri 23 were placed
in family homes during 1913*
St. Joseph's Foundling Home and Maternity
Hospital placed out 13 children during the year. We were
told that the horaes were visited by members of the church
The Home for the Friendless placed out 15,
members of the board visiting the homes previous to
placing out and afterwards.
The proper placing out of children i s so
delicate a matter, and is becoming so large an industry
here, that I urge its careful study by the committee
before named in consultation with the officers of the
State Chillren's Society. I am not, you will observe,
offering any scheme, but simply urging that to my mind
the tiiae has come for the agencies engaged in this work
to sit oovm together, observe what they are doing here
and what is "being worked out in other Pennsylvania
Counties. Because there have been misunderstandings
between the Pennsylvania Children's Aid Society and
certain societies here, I am the more insistent that
the General Secretary of that societj' should be called
into consultation here.
I am not aa expert in the children's field, but
it does not require an expert to observe that the standards
of child-placing are at many points below the rjormal which
will guarantee the safeguarding of the interest of the
children placed. The gravest dangers appear in connection
with the laxity (not extending to all cases, however) of
the after-supervision, though it has not become evident
that the previous inspection of homes has always been
complete. Here, as in many other directions, we have
been hampered by the absence of proper records.
V/e believe there are one or two other problems
which will soon be ripe for this corra-nittee, but we
prefer that they ahould be more distinctly revealed through
the development of larger family rehabilitation work than
they have been in the limited niffiiber of cases which we
Day Care of Children of ^^'orking; llothera
We come now to the Day Nursery. Here and in
other cities there are those v/ho affina that there should
he no institution of this sort. In other words, mothers
should be looked after ia their own homes and should not
be obliii'ed to go out to work which compels their use of
the Nursery. Whatever tendency there may be to cut
down the v/ork of mothers bearing the v/hole or a large
part of the responsibility of families, both economic and
othei-wise, it is not possible to yet conceive of a state
of affairs where it would not be necessary, for soine mothers
to v/ork, where indeed it may not be desirable for them
to have certain occupations outside of their ovm homes.
We do believe that a Day Nursery is a most necessary
institution in a city of any size.
During 1913 the Day Nursery received froii first
to last 7^ chil-lren for a smaller or larger numler of days.
Herewith are given certain figures regarding the daily
We are aware that serious criticism has been
leveled at the management of the Day Nursery. We believe
that the Day ITursery has erred in receiving the children
of woi.'ien not obliged to go out to work. An exaraination
was ma';e of the records which other societies have of
certain woi:ien who have used the Day Nursery. Superficially,
these records indicate that a certain few woi:ien should not
have been granted the privilege. We say "superficially"
because v.'e are quite unwilling to describe even generally
the statements made to us because they were not corroborated
by sufficient records.
But in the nature of thinus, the absence of complete
investigations muet inevitably mean that some are admitted
who should not be. Now if the money received froi'i the
mothers paid all expenses, the Nursery could be considered
to be simply a business concern, where any one might go.
This is not so, however, and a larger part of the expenses
must be borne by the community. For that reason, there
must be discrimination in admissions. It is obvious that
only the children of mothers out at woi*k should be received,
and that wives, whose husbands are able-bodied but lazy
should not ce permitted throiigh the services of the
Nursery to become the chief bread-winner for their
V/ith the reorganization of the Associated
Charities, there should be a definite understanding for
an exchange of information and for the tactful inquiry
into the condition of families making use of the "ursery.
It has been claiiiied that some of those who
used the Nursery would not make use of it if a.nything
of this sort were attempted. I do not believe that
any mother really needs the Nursery who v/ould take a
stand of tnis sort, and in this I am amply confirmed by
the experience of many other ITurseries,
Furthermore, I aiii quite sure that in a city
of this size and of this character, there are really
many more v/orking mothers who need its services than
now take advantage of the Nursery. It is not only a
necessary institution, but its present accommodations
should be utilized to a far greater degree than they
are. This utilization would speedily elimin-te that
group which wo\ild ouject to any friendly interest in
V/hat is the reason for this condition of affairs?
In the first place, I come straight back to the old cry
of lack of co-operation and understanding. It is incon-
ceivable, for instance, that the societies having to do
with families in their homes, have not run -cross
some instances vrtitre they might have urged the use of
the ITursery, even to the point of paying the extra
carfare where long distances from home to Hursery
and ITursery to work may have to be considered.
There are, however, even more fundarnental
questions regarding the Day llursery which cannot be
settled until there has been proper co-operation.
I refer to the question of location. \3 a first
location, the ITursery has been placed in the center
of the city so that it might be used by v/o.;ten from any
part of the city. Now the question may easily come up
as to whether the "Tursery sho'ald not consider Vi^hether
a certain section of the city did not contain a greater
number of wo:nen willing to make use of its facilities
if it were moved near to them, than now make use of it
when it is in the center. Furthermore, whether by
moving nearer to aay such section, its facilities would
not be fully taxed. At the present time there are
absolutely no data to be guided by. There will oe
when the district decisions co.iuTiittees before referred
to have been in action for six months or a year.
If such a course was ever deter;r.ined upon,
it would mean that efforts would have to be made in other
parts of the city, possibly, to find good coiTunon sense
V70!:ien living in these neighborlioods to receive a
limited number of children ii\ their ovm homes. I am
well aware of the dangers attendant to such a plan.
There would be ao thing reaching at all up to Day
ITursery standards. Certainly, however, such informal
sorts of home nurseries contain less dangers than the
locking into houses of groups of little children, or
placing them in the charge, for instance, of a sister
of ten or eleven, who is not only being filched of
her rightful educatiovi but is often quite inco-apetent
to deal with the kinds of emergencies and happenings
which ma^' cojue into a fa^nily of children during a single
week or month.
In closing, I wish to express, as I hope I
have implied, my great interest in the Day ITursery ^ork
here and elsewhere. I qui e appreciate the position
which they h-ive so.aetimes taken in the face of criticism,
There can be no question of the values in such an
institution. In the miserable x^olicy of isolation,
which has beea the raost prominent characteristic of the
charitable field here, they have fought for their own
ideals. But they, like others, must carefully watch
that they do not take false positions whenever in the
course of the getting-together era which is to come,
there are presented to them constructive and helpful
suggestions lookin^^ towards a greater usefulness for
the Day ITursery itself
PAR T VI
We wish to consider here three special aspects
of the care of the sick, though, of course, it is easily
seen that we are still in the field of i^ainily care, but
we are starting fro^a the medical point of view.
District ITurse As soj3_i_a_ tion_
Excei)t in one table, we have not before
mentioned the District ITurse Association. It is scarcely
necessary to linger long upon it now.
In the first place, as a social worker, I wish
to compliment it upon having the "best and moBt systematic
records of aay other of the agencies which are working
in homes. This is all the more to their credit, for
one v/ould naturally expect to find the better records
in other places. These records are, of course, largely
medical, but certain iiuportant social data often appear.
It is not, of course, presumed that the nursing agency
should maintain full social records.
It is important to note something about the
sources of requests for visits made to this association.
V/hile physicians referred 770, and individuals referred
129, and friends, 28, only 1 was referred by the Poor
Board, 6 by the Associated Charities, 1 by a dispensary
and 7 by hospitals.
Because it has had its own special field of
work, and has kept out of certain dangerous tendencies,
aiiiong \'7hich may 'oe noted the danger of 'becoining involved
in relief apart frora special diet, etc., it has suffered
less from lack of co-operation than the general social
agencies. Even at that, those families at the lower
margin, whom they have visited, have, many of them,
suffered most severely because of the absence of tha,t
constructive planning only possible 'vhen a number of
societies are working in much closer relationship.
Por the splendid service which it has
rendered, the association is to be congratulated. In
the next stage we have every reason to believe that
it will willingly and generously keep open the lines
of continuous conimuni cation with the other societies.
I may state that the very heavy preponderance
of calls by physicians is in itself one of the best
certificates of merit which it could present.
Care of the Tuberculars
The State Tuberculosis Dispensary reports;
The activities of the dispensary itself, of
course, do not fall within the "boundaries of this Survey.
It is a State agency. Unofficially, however, we wish to
express our deep appreciation of what appears to us to be
a very strongly comprehensive work. The presence of the
dispensary, however, develops certain local probleius which
heretofore have not been solved at all. We refer to the
co-operation of local agencies in providing adequate family
care in those cases where the patient is still living
at ho;:e, or in properly looking- after the fajiiilies of
patients who are sent to sanatoriuins.
The same lack of co-operation is here apparent.
The State Dispensary is aot authorized to do more than to
provide medicnl attention and in some cases to give milk
as a matter of diet. Its staff has even soiuetimes been
seriously embarrassed in obtaining proper clothing for
patients going to sanatoriuiiis. As for seeing that a
family in which tuberculosis exists, is receiving enough
to prevent the infection of well members of the family.
or in allaying the fears of a father, for instance, who
has "been admitted to a sanatorium, and does not k-iow just
how his faiiiily is going to get on, in dealing with really
a score of difficult questions which come up after the health
side ha,s Taeen attended to, there indeed, there is practically
nothing done, llowhere are the disheartening aspects of the
present situation so strongly marked as in this field.
It is perhaps significant that one time when I went to the
dispensary, the whole staff was busy in the examination
of a f.ainily of eight, in whicn every one had the disease.
The experience of other places has aiaply demonstrated that
many families co.iie to disaster through tuberculosis who
have kncrn nothing of charitable agencies before. An
early examination may reveal the possibility of arresting
the disease in the case of the chief bread-winner in the
fainily, but the offer of sanatorium care is refused because
there seems to be no v/ay for the family to get on without
him and he has not the happy-go-lucky character of many of
the men who ordinarily come to a charitable office and
who quite willingly go to a sanatorium without worrying
very much over how the family will get on because their
situation is always more or less emergent. The very
purposes of state-wile disr)ensaries are hampered and
traversed if the local agencies are not co-operatively
working in carrying what is really the heavy burden of
families in which tuberculosis exists.
CARE OF .IJON-KESIDEITTS AJiD THE HOME LESS
There is at present a division of responsilDility,
30 far as the care of these two classes which really constitute
one big class, is concerned.
The Poor Board issues transportation to other
points for non-residents, and where no other means of
transportation appears to he possible.
The Police Department gives temporary shelter
to homeless men in the Police Stations.
Eventually, though xiot at this tiine, the
city may have to consider the desirability of maintaining
a municipal lodging house in charge of tne Police
Department, with a work test included. If at the sai.ie
tii.ie, there is introduction of labor iito the County
Jail, the city will not becoi.ie an attractive place for
mere rovers. Of course, this means that otJier cities
will suffer by their presence, but the great need is
to awaken all cities to the need of having the srune
local systems and of initiating state campaigns for the
establishment of state colonies for the real 'j^'anderers
and vagrants who are evanescent and cannot be dealt
with in any hopeful -''ay excepting through co:nbined
municipal, state and even, in the end, national co-operation.
THE ATTITUDE OP THE COID/ITOIITY TOWARDS
PR IVATE GIVIITG
V!e h3.ve already in several parts of this Report
indicated that it has been the opinion of many that there
should be a greater concentration of responsibility for
neglected farailies on the side of public officials.
We have also tried to show how disastrous a policy of
this sort would be.
There are other considerations in connection
with this which deserve attention. So far as the ex-
penditure of public money is concerned, each year between
$275,000 and $300,000 is used in this city. This includes
public moneys passing through the Poor Board and State
appropriations to local institutions. It does not include
the appropriation of about |30.'^00 "to the Pennsylvania
Oral School for the Deaf, which is distinctly a state-wide
institution. It does include the maintenance of the State
Hospital, whicn, of course, receives patients fro.^i adjoining
territory. It will oe understood that we are only referring
to, and only including appropriations to, distinctively
V/e have estimated that these charitable societies
and institutions, including others receiving no State
appropriations, obtain fro-i private givers, about ^'73>OOQ.
The larger list includes the following:
Scranton Poor Board
Associated Charities and Humane Society
District Nursing Association
Scranton Day Nursery
He'brew Charitable Societies
St. Vincent de Paul Society
House of the Good Shepherd
St. Patrick's Orphan Asylum
St. Joseph's Foundling Home
Hoiiie for' the Friendless
Florence Crittenden Home
State Tuherculosis Dispensary
TTest Side Hospital
West Mountain Sanatorium
(V/hile returns are not complete, the
cnurches doing the largest worl-c have
V.lien 'rve coLie to social activities which are
outaiie of this particular field, we recognize that
private expenditures are increased. We recognize that
during the last few years, there have been extraordinary
demands in connection with building funds. V/e believe
that it will be necessary to consider a larger mutual
co-operation scheme with reference to new, as well as old,
Before doing so, I desire to call attention to
the fact that disproportionate attention has been given
to institutional development as against service development.
Here I am referring to private giving. There is one
splendid exception in the District Nursing Society.
But outside of the nursing side, I would call your attention
to the fact thcit both public and private expenditures in
this field have centered around relief. The voluntary
contributions whicn have been made recently to the
Associated Charities have been extreiiely small in aiuount,
witn tne exception of tne occasional Benefits. To whatever
point we trace back the reasons for this, whether to place
the blajie upon the society for not doing the co-operative
work which it should do, or upon the community for not
giving it support by which it could atte.-apt the task, is
a matter of siaall moment at the present time. The point of
suprene iiuportance is that the conununity has paid less
attention to the fundamental probleras of Family rehabilita-
tion, while in the main generously contributing to other
causes. Fow with the hi^^hest admiration of the other
social and charitable societies and institutions, it would
have been far better for each one of the.i to have had
slightly smaller support with the difference going to the
development of this work, than to have had the present
situation brought about. It is too late to rectify
the mistakes of the past. But the error must not go
on. The present condition demands that in the re-
organization of the Associated Charities there must
be a larger support than heretofore for the work from
year to year. With the tremendously greater efficiency
which will cOi.^e, the money now spent in the field ivin
multiply in the values returned. I wish most emphatically
to state, however, that I do not guarantee that in the
end there will oe less than the amounts now used required;
but that the increasing cost of future years will be
diminished by effective work, is obvious. This might as
v/ell be faced now. It may as well be faced imiiediat^ly
as to be put off. We are perfectly sure that you will
co..ie to it with greater or less effort because every city
is coi!iing to it whenever a sufficiently strong group
realize the shortcomings and realize that every possible kind
of social effort is being crippled by the absence of the
fundamental Faunily work.
To return nov; to the other question. We
have seen that in one most important field there has
been too little development in the city. When we
consider just how social movements are carried on, we
realize how individualistic they are. Wnea anyone
wants a thing and needs it to a greater or less degree,
he forthwith goes out and tries to get the cioney for it.
Without criticisiny any one of the special agencies
which have recently appealed for building funds, I have
not the slightest hesitation in sayin,^; that, considering
tne size of the city, etc., there have not been sufficiently
long intervals between the appeals. ]?or that reason,
other forms of social work naturally and justifiably
requiring increased resources have bee-n handicapped.
In a nvunber of cities e have suggested a form of
organization ^'iiicn we will briefly describe. First,
hov/ever, we would frankly state it is still an experiment
and not a clear and worked-out project like the Associated
Charities. It means that there shall be a central
cojiiiuittee composed of representatives of all of the social
and charitable agencies in the city, together with a
small group of disinterested people not associated intimate-
ly witJi aay one of tne societies, whicn endea'/ors by
mutual forbearance and understanding to determine
each year what new appeal or what appeals for large
increases in contributions should be given priority
in any ^iven season and what others should be temporarily
■withdravrn, all with the consent of the particular board
of directors involved. Sorne very delicate and difficult
tasks are involved in the working out of a scheine of
this sort. It requires that the chairman should be the
kind of leader who has iiuagination enough to see both
sides of a question down to the very last detail, who
will see that even justice is given to all presentations
of needs. In addition and above all things, ne must be
one who will open the eyes of the representatives of
different societies to the absolute need of developing
an unselfishness which i^iii mean a readiness to yield
if the stronger arguineats are on the other side.
But in order for them to be considered stronger, it
means that each representative should gain a far deeper
iinderstanding of t/ie work of other agencies and so widen
his intei'est beyond those particular activities in which
his interest has been centered.
It will be observed that this is the only
kind of formal association between the different
societies which I have recoiiuiiended, with the exception
of the child-helping committee before referred to.
So far as the Faiiily work is concerned, co-operation
there may be and is developed through informal methods
with the responsibility for its development resting
with the Associated Ch^rrities. Here is something which
requires more formal organization and which requires
definite agreements of boards of directors "before the
cornrrtittee can be formed. It is T^ossible, of course,
for the Associated Charities to help in organizing
such a coi'Hjnittee, in which it will be one organization
simply. It is possible that before such experimentation
the way to mutual understanding will be opened up if a
city conference of social ai^encies was organized to
which any interested persons could come, and at whose
meeting problems affecting different kinds of societies
should be presented and discussed. This conference
might holi four meetings durin^,- the winter season.
For the first year at least, I would not have it
ask any one fror;i outside the city to take part.
Rather I would have it arranged to have the work of
different societies, classified in groups, presented
at successive meetings by interested persons.
If the questioa of a central coiTimittee of the
kind indicated does come up, let it be remembered that
its weapon is not coercion but moral suasion. The
board of directors of any society can do anything; it
wills to do within the limits of the powers granted to it
by its charter. It caxi rebel against any reconuuendation
to delay a particular appeal. If it cannot be persuaded
to change its course, it can appeal to the community
and the central committee canaot prevent its doing so.
But if the central couTiittee has acted in all fairness
and can justify its stand, it is bound to have considerable
influence upon the business coKimunity. If it misuses
its .iioral power by lack of imagination, narrowness of
thought or other ..^ore individual reasons, it will not be
able to cripple a good cause.
We do not present any extensive investigation
of institutions. This Survey hns centered around
associated efforts outside of individual societies.
Many institutions, however, have outsiie
questions to consider. So far as the general co-operative
movement is concerned, their responsi'Dilities as members
of inHtitution boards are not direct. Tnough it would
be a desiraole thing and a useful thing for members of
such boards to serve on decisions coimai ttees, it is not
It is advisable that institutions should
register in the confidential exchange.
V^e have already made certain recormiiendatinns
regarding the need of taking up methods of child-placiiTg.
It may be asked whether it is desirable that
institutions should request the Associated Charities
to make investigations of applications for admission.
J.Iy ans^ver is that it may or may not be. Certainly it
should make the fullest use of the records of that
society. Certainly it should give tne society the
advantage of its ovn investigation. It might be
desirable for it to test its own methods of investigation
by asking the Associated Charities to make full reports
upon a few cases. It is un^vise, however, for the
Associated Charities to oeco:!ie the center through
which all investigations are made. In the case of
individual institutioas and upon the request of such
institutions, there may be working agreements for
undertaking this responsibility, dependent upon whether
it has facilities for doing its primary work.
When it coines to the central coioraittee last
referred to, each institution shonld be represented
if it is making any appeal for private contributions.
With reference to the faiailies into whose
conditions we specifically inquired, we have arranged for
the formation of a small group of volunteers who will
attempt to work out soine of the difficulties involved
until the time coraes for a larger development of volunteer
With reference to the whole report we would
reco.iffiiend that it be referred to a small corrjnittee:
(1) To consider and discuss the report, and to
approve or change the recommendations therein
(2) To either refer hack its final recoroinendati-n
to a meeting of this sort or to he instructed
to proceed, in consultation with the boards of the
different societies involved, to carry out as far
as possible these final recon-imendations.